The country has also stepped up its testing efforts to trace asymptomatic infections with the deployment of thousands of so-called ‘lateral flow’ tests in 67 different locations across the UK, following a successful mass test pilot in Liverpool.
Meanwhile, layoffs in the UK also peaked between June and September, while the new coronavirus lockdown is only expected to worsen already severe impacts on jobs and the economy.
Here’s everything you might have missed overnight.
UK reports highest coronavirus deaths in nearly six months
The UK coronavirus death toll has risen by 532 in the last 24-hour period – the highest figure reported in a single day since May 12 – with the number of new cases increasing by 20,412.
The increase in the number of deaths brings the total number of people who have died within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test in the UK to 49,770. The total number of cases has risen to 1,233,775, according to government data.
The latest figures were made public as new data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed the number of recorded weekly deaths involving coronavirus in England and Wales topped 1,000 for the first time since June .
There were 1,379 deaths mentioning a ‘novel coronavirus’ recorded in the week ending October 30, accounting for 12.7% of all deaths in England and Wales, the ONS said.
England introduces mass testing
The Department of Health and Social Affairs said 600,000 initial lateral flow test kits – rapid tests typically involving a saliva sample that can return results within 15 minutes – are being delivered to some local areas in the coming days in the coming days. as coronavirus mass test to detect asymptomatic. cases will be launched in 67 local authorities in England.
This number will be broken down into some 10,000 tests to be made available to each of the areas and will be used to start testing the priority groups. This will then be followed by a weekly allowance.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs he wrote to directors of public health across the country about providing “10 percent of their population per week” with testing.
Record increase in layoffs in UK
As the new nationwide lockdown continues, concerns about rising unemployment are mounting with a record increase in layoffs between July and September.
The unemployment rate in the UK rose to 4.8 percent from 4.5 percent in the previous quarter as Covid-19 continued to hurt the job market, official figures show.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported a 33,000 drop in the number of workers on payrolls last month, which fell by 782,000 between March and October.
“Estimates from July to September 2020 show a sharp increase in the unemployment rate and a record number of layoffs, as the employment rate continues to decline,” the ONS said.
In the three months to September, layoffs reached a record high of 314,000 people. Young workers have been hit the hardest by the job cuts, with jobs declining by about 300,000 among 16 to 24 year olds.
Covid-19 hospitalization in the United States reaches record high
Coronavirus hospitalizations in the United States reached a record high of 61,964 as the pandemic continued to escalate across the country on Tuesday.
And the number of daily cases of the virus across the country also hit a new high of 131,000, the highest number in a day since the start of the public health emergency.
The number of people being treated for the virus in hospitals has now more than doubled since September, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
Tuesday’s shocking number now exceeds the previous high of 59,940 reached during the initial wave of the virus on April 15, and the second high on July 23 of 59,718.
The United States became the first country to surpass 10 million cases on Sunday and is now averaging a record 111,000 new cases per day, according to the New York Times.
More than 245,000 Americans have died from the virus today. Read the full details here.
UK universities to send students home for Christmas after lockdown
English universities are telling students to go home to spend Christmas with their families as soon as the lockdown ends next month.
Face-to-face learning is expected to end on December 9, under new guidelines, allowing young people to travel at a time when the risk of transmission of Covid-19 is lowest – after the four weeks of restrictions.
A week-long “student travel window” starting December 3 will see universities set staggered departure dates, to ease the pressure on public transport.
The guidelines follow fury at suggestions that students could be trapped in their dorms over the holiday season, to prevent them from spreading the virus across the country.
The husband and wife team behind the coronavirus vaccine
The global race for the first effective Covid-19 vaccine is on and a married couple, both doctors, have become the dream team behind a potential inoculation that has shown the most promise to date.
On Monday, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced that the vaccine they were developing with BioNTech was 90% effective – an announcement that sparked worldwide enthusiasm, especially in the UK where Boris Johnson said the government had ordered enough vaccine doses to cover. a third of the population.
The couple behind the company’s success is Ugur Sahin, 55, who is the CEO of German biotech company BioNTech, while his wife Oezlem Tuereci, 53, is the company’s medical director. Learn more about their journey to (potentially) discover the long-awaited vaccine here.