LONDON, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Britain recorded its highest
number of daily cases of COVID-19 on Thursday at 6,634,
according to government data, reflecting a second wave of
infections sweeping through the country but also a much higher
level of testing than during the first wave.
Thursday's number was up from 6,178 on Wednesday, itself a
jump from 4,926 the previous day.
Earlier, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the government
estimated fewer than 10,000 people were becoming infected every
day, as opposed to estimated numbers over 100,000 during the
peak of the first wave.
"(At the peak), we estimate through surveys that over
100,000 people a day were catching the disease, but we only
found about 6,000 of them and they tested positive," he said in
an interview on Sky News.
"Now we estimate that it's under 10,000 people a day getting
the disease. That's too high, but it's still much lower than in
While testing capacity has increased dramatically since the
first wave, the system has nevertheless been under strain, with
many people reporting they were unable to get tests, or had to
travel long distances. Delays in getting results back have also
led to criticism of the system.
Public Health England said there had also been 40 new
deaths, up from 37 the day before. At the peak of the pandemic,
Britain was reporting more than 1,000 deaths per day.
Britain has the highest death toll from COVID-19 in Europe,
(Reporting by William James, David Milliken and Estelle
Shirbon; editing by Stephen Addison)