UK daily Covid cases fall 50% in two weeks with 45,077 new infections

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COVID cases have dropped by 50 per cent in two weeks – with 45,077 new infections reported today.

Another 341 tragic deaths have been logged in the past 24 hours.

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Cases on the Government’s dashboard have been falling for weeksCredit: PA

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Hospitalisations have started to go down too, with a steady decline in the past few weeks.

It’s a promising sign that the latest Omicron wave is on the way down.

Most people now tend to recover at home from Omicron, with the milder strain and vaccines making it a less severe illness.

The huge drop in falling official cases coincided with the scrapping of free tests last month – but the rise had started to dip before then.

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And last week the official national survey of cases by the Office for National Statistics also showed a drop.

Vaccines are the best line of defence, health bosses say, with a new study showing symptoms in the triple jabbed last on average half as long as a common cold.

Spring boosters are being dished out for certain groups in society, to keep their immunity high.

It comes after the World Health Organisation warned a new Omicron strain, XE, is more transmissible than previous variants – with 1,179 cases detected in the UK so far.

Omicron XE is a sub-variant or “recombinant” variant – and was first detected in the UK in January.

The WHO explained: “Early-day estimates indicate a community growth rate advantage of 10 per cent as compared to BA.2, however this finding requires further confirmation.

“XE belongs to the Omicron variant until significant differences in transmission and disease characteristics, including severity, may be reported.”

The symptoms are thought to be similar to previous strains.

The most common reported symptoms are similar to that of a cold.

People with the variant have mostly reported having a sore throat, sneezing, fatigue, and a runny nose.

Parents have been urged to be on the look out for Covid symptoms as children return to school following the Easter holidays.

As spring is now in full swing, experts have said common hay fever signs – like a runny nose – shouldn’t be mistaken for the virus.

He said: “All the ages are coming down, pretty much in parallel but it’s really good to see the older ages, the over 75s starting to come down quite fast. 

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“Children who tend to drive all these waves are lower than some of the younger adults but it could be that after the Easter holidays these start to come back again as we’ve seen in previous peaks.”

XE is one of four new Covid variants that have been spotted in the UK and Europe that health chiefs are watching closely.

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