Coronavirus UK map: How many confirmed cases are there in your area?

Man pausing outside to eat an ice-cream. Image copyright Reuters

There have been more than 260,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK and more than 37,000 people have lost their lives, government figures show.

However, these numbers only include people who have been tested, and the total number of deaths relating to coronavirus is thought to be higher.

Latest measures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggest higher figures.

The first, counting death certificates mentioning the virus, suggests deaths reached 45,000 by the week beginning 15 May, while the second, recording deaths over and above the expected number, suggests a toll of more than 59,000 by the same date.

Some of these deaths are likely to include people with undiagnosed coronavirus or who died as an indirect result of the pandemic.

Coronavirus accounted for just over 25% of all deaths in the UK in the week to 15 May, according to death registration data.

In the week to 17 April, when deaths from the virus reached their peak, this figure was just under 40%.

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UK daily deaths are falling

The new coronavirus, which causes the disease Covid-19, was first confirmed in the UK at the end of January, but the number of daily confirmed cases and related deaths only began to increase significantly by the second half of March.

Although strict social distancing measures introduced at the end of that month helped bring daily deaths down, the UK has the highest official death toll in Europe and the second highest in the world. However, the government and many experts say it is too soon to make international comparisons.

A further 412 deaths were announced on Wednesday, after three consecutive days of fewer than 150 deaths being reported. Fewer deaths are generally reported on weekends and bank holidays.

The official government total number of deaths in the UK now stands at 37,460.

Death registrations mentioning Covid-19 fell in every setting in the week to 15 May, according to ONS figures published on Tuesday.

The total number of death registrations rose by 10% - however BBC head of statistics Robert Cuffe suggests this is due to the Friday bank holiday on 8 May pushing recorded deaths into the following week.

The majority of the UK's deaths have been in England, with more than 33,000 so far - about 90% of the total for the UK.

In Scotland, the official government figure for deaths is 2,304, but data on death registrations from the National Records of Scotland (NRS) suggests it is at least 3,500.

In Wales, the death toll stands at 1,293, while there have been 516 deaths in Northern Ireland.

Most recorded coronavirus deaths have been among the elderly, with NHS England figures showing more than half of deaths have been among people aged over 80.

Latest ONS data shows the number of coronavirus-related deaths in care homes has stabilised.

A quarter of all coronavirus related deaths have been among care home residents, ONS data suggests.

How big is the epidemic in care homes?

Data collated by the ONS has also suggested people living in more deprived areas of England and Wales are more likely to die with coronavirus than those in more affluent places.

It also found that black men and women were nearly twice as likely to die as white people, with the risk persisting after taking into account age, where people live and some measures of deprivation and prior health.

However, other preliminary research released by the government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) said that ethnic-minorities in the UK are no more likely to die of coronavirus than white people when the effects of other illnesses and deprivation are taken into account.

What is the R number in the UK?

The latest infection rate, or "R number", sits between 0.7 and 1.0, according to the Sage group of advisors.

This number, the average number of people an infected person will pass the disease on to, has remained steady for two weeks.

If R is below one then the number of people contracting the disease will fall; if it is above one, the number will grow.

The government has said that the R number is one of the most important factors in deciding when lockdown measures can be eased.

Public Health England estimates the number in England to be 0.72-0.77. In Scotland the estimate is between 0.7 and 1.0, and in Northern Ireland it is just above 0.7.

Wales has not released an official estimate but the Chief Executive of the NHS in Wales, Dr Andrew Goodall, has said it is below one.

Daily confirmed cases continuing downward trend

The number of new daily confirmed cases has been falling since a peak in April, despite an increase in the number of tests being carried out.

A further 2,013 cases were announced on Wednesday.

Cases were originally concentrated in London, the Midlands and the North West of England.

But South Wales and parts of the North West and North East also have a high proportions of cases.

Giving the government's daily briefing on Tuesday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock raised the possibility of future "local lockdowns" to control the spread of the virus.

The government estimates that around 137,000 people, or 0.25% of the population in England, had the virus between 4 May and 17 May.

Hospitals are seeing fewer coronavirus patients

The number of people in hospital with Covid-19 has been gradually declining since a peak over Easter.

On Wednesday, the government said the number of people in hospital with coronavirus had fallen to 8,879 - an 11% drop from the same time last week.

Image copyright Empics

However, the picture is different across the UK's nations and regions, with numbers falling faster in some areas than others.

Testing is now available to more people

Figures on testing for coronavirus in the UK show that more than two million people have been tested.

There were 117,013 tests in the 24 hours to 09:00 on Wednesday, staying above the government's 100,000-a-day target.

The daily total includes test kits sent to individuals or to testing locations but not yet analysed or returned, as well as tests fully processed through the relevant UK labs.

The actual number of people tested in recent days is not known, with the government citing "technical difficulties" with data collection.

Monday saw the lowest number of tests since early May .

Anyone over the age of five years and displaying symptoms can now book a test to determine whether they currently have the virus.

All residents and staff in care homes in England, and patients and staff in the NHS can book tests regardless of whether they have symptoms.

The prime minister has set a target for a daily capacity of 200,000 by the end of May - although some health professionals have raised concerns over the accuracy of tests and how long it takes to get results.

Increased testing is essential for the government's strategy to "test, track and trace" potential coronavirus cases.

Contact tracing systems are being launched in England and Scotland on Thursday. Northern Ireland has its own approach up and running and Wales' system is due to start in early June.

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