The coronavirus has hit the UK hard, with the country recording hundreds of thousands of cases and more than 50,000 deaths related to the disease. England faced the highest death rates in Europe during the first wave of the pandemic.
The government figures below only include confirmed cases – some people with the disease are not tested.
Where are the current coronavirus hotspots in the UK?
At the start of the pandemic, London was hit by the impact of the coronavirus. Since then, however, the center of the virus has shifted north and into areas of Northern Ireland. Daily life in the UK has been subject to varying degrees of restrictions since March, and currently different lockdowns apply in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. These regulations are set by the legislative body in each country, so there are local differences. There may also be additional measures at municipal level.
Details of the English lockdowns are listed here, Scottish lockdowns here, Welsh here and Northern Irish here.
How is the disease progressing in the UK?
Cases in the UK first peaked in early April, before starting to fall from May to early July. However, business has been back to normal since August and the UK is now in the grip of a second wave. Numbers passed the earlier peak in September and have continued to rise in October and November – although some of this can be attributed to more testing and targeted testing in coronavirus outbreak areas.
The number of people hospitalized with coronavirus has skyrocketed after the records began in late March, peaking in April. That figure has been rising again since September.
Deaths were highest during the first peak of cases, with more than 1,000 daily deaths on some days in April. They started to rise again in October, after the previous rise in the number of cases.
How much of the second wave is due to more testing?
Part of the surge in the number of cases can be attributed to more testing. Many more tests were carried out in the autumn than during the first wave in the spring.
In March and April, relatively few tests were available and given to people with severe symptoms – mainly in hospitals. Most people with milder symptoms weren’t tested, so these cases weren’t recorded, meaning the actual number was probably much higher. Sir Patrick Vallance has said the daily count may have been over 100,000 on some days in the first wave.
During the start of the second wave in September, more tests were available and the majority of people took community tests. This means that people with milder complaints were tested and included in the official figures. The actual number of cases will still be higher than the recorded number, but testing will pick up more of the total.
However, given the potential of Covid-19 for exponential growth, the shape of the case curve is critical, and the effect of increased cases can be seen in the hospitalization and mortality curves above.
Find coronavirus cases near you
The graph below shows the areas with the highest daily peaks of new Covid-19 cases. In many parts of the UK there are now a number of cases transcending the pandemic’s first peak.
Other areas have had less dramatic peaks of infection. Find the case curve in your local area by typing in the search bar below.
The table below shows the number of cases per 100,000 in your area, both for the past week and since the start of the pandemic.
About this data
This data comes from Public Health England, in collaboration with decentralized authorities in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Differences in data collection and publishing schedules can lead to temporary inconsistencies.
The totals for October 3rd and 4th cases include items from earlier days published late due to a technical failure.
Since Covid-19 was first identified as a new strain of coronavirus in Wuhan, China, late last year, it has spread around the world.
The virus can cause pneumonia. Those who have fallen ill reportedly suffer from a cough, fever and breathing difficulties. You can read more about the symptoms here.
There are things you can do, such as wear a face mask, to protect yourself and slow the spread of the virus. The most important of these are washing your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, and coughing and sneezing into tissues.
Due to the unprecedented and persistent nature of the coronavirus outbreak, this article is regularly updated to ensure it reflects the current situation as as well as possible. Any significant corrections made to this or earlier versions of the article will remain in the footnote in accordance with Guardian editorial policy.