Covid-19: infection rates thought to be increasing across Greater Manchester

Modelling done by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggests that more people have been testing positive for Covid-19 in all 10 boroughs of the city-region.

Covid-19 rates in Greater Manchester are rising with more people testing positive for the novel coronavirus, new data suggests.

Modelling by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggests the rate of people with Covid-19 in the most recent week up to 18 June was higher in all 10 boroughs of the city-region than it was in the previous week.

The rates across much of Greater Manchester are roughly in line with the ONS’ estimation of the prevalence of Covid-19 across England as a whole.

It comes as new research shows the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron variants have now become the dominant strains of Covid-19.

What does the data show for Greater Manchester?

The latest modelling by the ONS on the prevalence of Covid-19 in the city-region has been analysed by our sister title NationalWorld.

For the latest week (12 June to 18 June) the rate of people testing positive was 1 in 35 in Salford and Wigan and 1 in 40 in the other eight boroughs of Greater Manchester.

Salford also had the highest percentage of people thought to be testing positive in the most recent week, at 2,76%, followed by Wigan at 2.69%.

The percentage rates for the other eight boroughs ranged from 2.36% in Bury and Oldham to 2.61% in Trafford.

These figures were all increases on the modelling for the previous week of 5 June to 11 June.

In that week Bury’s percentage rate had been as low as 1.84%, meaning 1 in 55 people there had the novel coronavirus.

In Manchester, Stockport and Trafford 1 in 45 people had Covid-19 in that week, while in the other six boroughs of Greater Manchester the rate was 1 in 50.

The estimates are based on random PCR samples from private households across the UK. It excludes people living in communal housing such as care homes.

What has been said about current Covid-19 rates?

NationalWorld’s analysis of the data shows Covid-19 rates rising across all four nations of the UK in the most recent week of statistics.

And on 23 June the Wellcome Sanger Institute published data which showed the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sub-variants became the dominant Covid strains in England in the week to 11 June.

These were designated as ‘variants of concern’ by the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) in May, and have been blamed for a new wave of infections in recent weeks.

The UKHSA says residents need to do their bit to keep people safe by remaining vigilant.

Dr Sam Ghebrehewet, interim regional deputy director for the UKHSA North West, said: “We need to continue to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe and vaccination is the best form of defence we have - it’s never too late to get vaccinated.

“We can all play our part - stay at home if you have any respiratory symptoms or a fever and limit contact with others until you are feeling better - particularly if they are likely to be at greater risk if they catch Covid-19.

“Face coverings and hand washing remain important in reducing transmission. Consider wearing a face-covering in crowded, enclosed spaces and washing your hands thoroughly and often, especially before and after getting on public transport or getting in from work, shops or the pub.

“Meeting others outside is much safer than indoors as the fresh air helps to blow the Covid-19 particles away. So, make the most of the warm weather over the summer and meet family and friends outside. Or if you meet indoors, let the fresh air in by opening doors and windows.

“Let’s enjoy the summer and our regained freedoms but keep in mind that Covid-19 hasn’t gone away and we all need to do our bit to live safely.”