London may no longer have the worst coronavirus death toll in the country, according to data from Public Health England.
The capital was passed by the Northwest, where there were 6,935 deaths involving Covid-19. By comparison, there have been 6,887 coronavirus deaths in London over the same period, 48 fewer.
The numbers emerged in PHE’s latest weekly Covid surveillance report, which includes data through last Tuesday.
It also shows that the North West has recorded 11,114 more cases of coronavirus than London since the start of the pandemic – 46,906 against 35,792.
London has recorded 77 deaths from Covid per 100,000 population, while the North West has recorded 95 deaths per 100,000 population.
The continued slowdown in mortality and the comparatively low infection rate could reassure more people to return to work in central London.
According to the latest PHE report, there have been 30 more coronavirus deaths in London recorded in the previous seven days. The previous week had seen 45 dead in the capital.
Separate PHE figures seen by the standard show infection rates have increased week-to-week in 17 of the 32 boroughs, but remain well below those recorded in the Midlands and North.
The highest rate was recorded in Hackney and the city – with the two boroughs combined for statistical purposes due to the small number of residents of the Square Mile – where 17 people per 100,000 residents have tested positive for the virus.
Barking and Dagenham were in second place with 12.3 cases per 100,000, followed by Hounslow of 10 and Barnet of 9.4. In comparison, Blackburn with Darwen was at 77.9, Leicester was at 55.5, Oldham at 56.5 and Bradford at 48.8.
London’s overall infection rate was estimated at 6.0 between July 29 and August 4, up 0.1 from the previous week, but double the figure six weeks earlier after six weekly increases successive.
PHE said a total of 4,130 new cases were detected across England in the most recent week, up 68 from the previous seven days. These figures relate to “first pillar” testing in hospitals and nursing homes and “second pillar” testing in drive-thru centers and mobile units.
PHE mortality figures contrast with those published by the Office for National Statistics, which are considered to offer the most comprehensive estimate of the impact of Covid-19.
According to the ONS, a total of 8,479 deaths involving coronaviruses had been recorded in the capital until July 24, and 7,708 in the Northwest.