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Coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic weekly update for Malvern Seniors

6th February 2022


Denmark declares pandemic over


We keep an eye on the published government figures and monitor the media to asses the level of risk for Seniors in the Malvern Hills district. We also provide links to where further information can be found.

This page is normally updated every Sunday between 1800 and 2400 hours GMT.

Information about Coronavirus can be found on the NHS website:




How to get vaccinated

More about vaccinations

Number of cases

Number of deaths

Healthcare numbers

Forecast for the week ahead

Longer term outlook

Advice for seniors


Further information:

How to request a COVID test

About the Zoe COVID symptom study

About the NHS contact tracing app

About the NHS COVID pass

Summary of links

Menu of archived pages


Denmark has declared the pandemic over, despite sky high cases, as 80% of the population is vaccinated and therefore Omicron is generally not causing severe illness.

In the UK, daily hospital admissions, the number of COVID patients in hospital beds and the number of patients on ventilators have been slowly falling during the last three weeks. Daily deaths from COVID are now beginning to show a downward trend, and there is speculation up to half these might in any event not be 'true' COVID deaths.

The picture of daily cases is becoming misted. The Zoe app suggests cases have gone up slightly this week, whereas the 'PHE' figures have gone down, possibly because fewer people are taking PCR tests and reporting the result of their Lateral Flow Tests. It may soon be time for the reporting of daily cases to be discontinued.

For many in the UK it's now time for life to return to normal, especially for those of us who are in reasonable health and have had three doses of the vaccine.

While the Omicron virus remains prevalent there is a fair chance we will all catch COVID-19 at some time or other. It may send us to bed for a few days and it could take a week or two for us to recover, but we are unlikely to be hospitalised and our resistance to future infection should be bolstered.

COVID hospital Intensive Care beds are now said to be mostly occupied either by those who are unvaccinated or have had only 2 doses of the vaccine, so make sure to get your booster jab if you have not already done so.

Click to view our advice

Lateral Flow Device kits which only require a nose swab can be used to test for COVID at home, for example before either going to an event or visiting friends.

A local summary of COVID cases can be found on the Worcestershire Coronavirus Dashboard.

Note: use the arrow <> buttons at the bottom of the Dashboard screen to move between pages.

Click for Worcestershire County Council COVID-19 news

Click for Simple Summary of Malvern numbers on the Coronavirus dashboard

Click for the latest UK Government Coronavirus advice

How to get vaccinated

Under the government's plan to deal with the Omicron Emergency, all those aged 16+ years are now eligible to book a booster 3 months after their second dose.

Click NHS link - Who can get a coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine

From Monday 31st January vulnerable children aged 5 - 11 years can be vaccinated; this may be by invitation - ask your GP.

For information about walk-in centres in Worcestershire go to the website:


and click the Vaccine Rollout tab at the top of the page.

Click for information about vaccination at the Three Counties Showground

Otherwise either see the NHS website for walk-in opening times and vaccine availability:


Or click this link for more information and to book a vaccination on-line:

Book a Coronavirus vaccination - NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Or talk to your GP.

Note: the immuno-compromised may be offered a third jab as part of their primary course, followed by a booster 3 months later.

More about vaccinations

The Omicron variant is now dominant and still spreading rapidly. It can make you 'very poorly' so it is essential to get your booster jab if you have not already had it.


 Our bar chart below shows the total number of:

  1. first jabs;

  2. second jabs;

  3. booster and third jabs;

  4. for comparison, the population of the UK broken down by age band.


COVID vaccination bar chart

Vaccinometer as of 6th February 2022

You won't see much change from last week's chart as the vaccination rate has slowed to a snail's pace compared to pre-Christmas.

The population of the UK aged 12+ is about 58M, so were everyone in that age group to be fully vaccinated the lower two blue lines showing 1st and 2nd doses should ideally reach 58M. Progress towards that goal is now slow.

Currently there are just over 5M in this age group who are unvaccinated, which is a lot, and 4M still to get their 2nd dose. That alone is not enough and a third jab is necessary to obtain protection from Omicron.

Click for NHS video warning young people of the dangers of the virus for the unvaccinated.

Vaccination statistics can be found on the Vaccination tab of the Coronavirus Dashboard.

Booster jabs

The number of booster jabs given in England can be found in a spreadsheet on the NHS England website. Look in the data section for the COVID-19 daily announced vaccinations Excel file which gives a breakdown of jabs by region and age.

Click for NHS COVID-19 vaccinations

A summary can also be found on the Coronavirus Dashboard.

The government says everyone aged 18+ years has been offered a booster jab. To date about 48M have had two doses, and just over 37M booster doses have been administered, suggesting 11M still to boost in the UK; but those under 16 years are not yet eligible for a booster jab, so probably about 6M still to boost.

Vaccinations Worldwide

A chart of the worldwide vaccination situation can be found on the Our World in Data website.

Click for worldwide statistics

Hint: click the country list on the left hand side of the screen to add or remove countries from the chart.

Orange triangleNumber of cases

On 31st January 2022 the Coronavirus Dashboard was modified to count repeat infections more than 90 days after a previous case. Before Christmas repeat infections were unlikely, but this changed with the arrival of Omicron.

In consequence there was a step increase in the number of cumulative cases, and a jump in the number of daily cases reported on 31st January due to the addition of historic figures, which we have smoothed in the charts below.

During the last week the average rate of people testing COVID positive in the UK reported by PHE on the 'Coronavirus Dashboard' fell slightly from 86,605 to 82,830 cases per day, while the ZOE COVID Symptom Study estimates an increase to 206,000 cases per day compared to 182,000 last week.

The chart below shows how the daily rate reported by PHE has varied since 1st September 2020.

COVID daily new cases

UK daily confirmed COVID cases 1st September 2020 to 6th February 2022

Zooming in, the next chart shows in more detail how UK daily cases have been slowly falling.

Daily COVID cases to 2nd May 2021

UK daily confirmed COVID cases 12th December 2021 to 6th February 2022


During the last week about 600,000 cases of COVID-19 were recorded and the cumulative total of confirmed UK COVID-19 cases reported by PHE rose to 17,803,325 (including repeat infections).

In Worcestershire there have now been 146,997 confirmed cases of COVID-19 (including repeat infections) with  about 6,500 cases recorded last week.

The next chart illustrates how daily cases in Worcestershire have begun to fall this week after flat-lining at 950 cases per day.

Note: the figures for  last 5 days are not averaged as there has been insufficient data following addition of historic repeated infections on 31st January.

COVID cases in Worcestershire

Daily cases in Worcestershire from 1st December 2021 to 6th February 2022

The breakdown by Worcestershire Lower Tier Local Authorities (LTLA) is shown in the following table, together with comparisons for Herefordshire, a more sparsely populated county, and the city of Leicester.

Note: the cumulative cases are copied from the 'Cases by area' (whole pandemic) data set of the Coronavirus Dashboard. The weekly increase is normally the difference between this week and last week's total.

This week we have smoothed the figures by ignoring the step adjustment on 31st January and multiplied the resulting 6 day increase by 7/6.

Districts of Worcs Cases Weekly increase Population
Bromsgrove 27,694 +946 98,529
Malvern Hills 14,497 +914 77,545
Redditch 24,095 +873 85,317
Worcester 26,544 +1,202 103,542
Wychavon 28,997 +1,387 126,240
Wyre Forest 25,170 +1,057 100,957
TOTAL 146,997 +6,193 592,130
County of Hereford 39,973 +2,139 195,000
Leicester (city of) 108,588 +2,657 400,000

Cumulative cases reported by PHE in Worcestershire to 6th February 2022

Note: the weekly increase is indicative; the seven day average by area, which varies day to day, is an alternative metric that can be found on the Coronavirus dashboard.

The main point to note is that cases remain high.

Cases in Malvern Hills by age group

On the cases tab of the Coronavirus dashboard you can either select the county of Worcestershire or a local authority such as the Malvern Hills, and there you can find a heat map showing cases by age group over time and a chart comparing the number of cases under 60 years with those aged 60+.

The latest figures show the infection rate rising both in those aged 0-59 and those aged 60+ where the case rate is about 4 times lower.

The rolling number of cases per 100,000 per week reported for 30th January has risen to 392 in the over 60s and 1,625 in those aged 0 - 59 years.

 Click for cases by specimen date age demographics in the Malvern Hills

Interactive maps

At the bottom of the Coronavirus Dashboard (daily update) page there is an Interactive Map which is coloured to show infection rates across the country. This shows high infection rates across much of England but cases falling in Wales and parts of Scotland

Click for Interactive Map of COVID cases

Note: the Interactive Map works on desktop PCs but it's possible you may encounter difficulties using a tablet or smartphone.

Recent weekly cases to 30th January are: North Malvern 117; Malvern Link 92; Pickersleigh 98; Barnards Green 88; Malvern Wells and Priory 81; Callow End and Hanley 58; Upton and Welland 50.

Locally, cases remain high and have gone up a tad.

Another map can be found on the Zoe COVID Study website indicating extrapolated cases based on reports from those using the Zoe app.

Click for People with COVID (estimated from the Zoe app)


Number of deaths

Statistics on COVID deaths are published by Public Health England, The Office of National Statistics, and NHS England.

TrianglePHE figures

Note of caution: the inclusion of cases of repeat infections on the Coronavirus Dashboard seems to have resulted in a step increase in daily deaths for 1st February which we have 'smoothed'.

Public Health England reports suggest that there were roughly 2,000 COVID (28) deaths in UK hospitals and care homes in the last week bringing the cumulative total to 158,318 (including deaths linked to repeat infections), with the daily average falling slightly to 245 deaths per day.

In comparison averaged over recent years 1,700 people die daily from all causes.

UK COVID death rate

COVID-19 (28) death rate 1st December 2021 to 6th February 2022

Click to view the UK government Coronavirus Dashboard

Note: possibly up to half these deaths might not be directly attributable to COVID (see note on ONS deaths below).

ONS figures

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) separately reports registered deaths in England and Wales where COVID-19 is mentioned on the death certificate. The ONS figures lag the PHE figures by 10 - 14 days and do not include Northern Ireland and Scotland.

Click for national ONS data on deaths (Excel spreadsheet)

The ONS figures are broken down by District providing a glimpse of where deaths are occurring. The provisional cumulative total of COVID related deaths in Worcestershire reported by the ONS up to 21st January (week 3 of 2022) is shown below.

Note: the numbers are from the ONS Death Registrations-Pivot table

Districts of
Week 3 Population
Bromsgrove 164 142 8 3 98,529
Malvern Hills 61 98 4 0 77,545
Redditch 108 109 2 1 85,317
Worcester 87 134 5 2 103,542
Wychavon 157 154 6 4 126,240
Wyre Forest 171 132 4 2 100,957
TOTAL 748 769 29 12 592,130

Provisional cumulative COVID-19 deaths registered by ONS to 21st January 2022

Note: summation of rows 9 to 339 of the ONS deaths Registrations-Pivot table.

There was 1 death in a care home, 1 in hospital and 1 other in Bromsgrove; 1 death in hospital in Redditch; 2 deaths in hospital in the city of Worcester; 1 death in a care home, 1 at home and 2 in hospital in Wychavon; and 2 deaths in hospital in Wyre Forest.

In England and Wales 1,480 COVID-19 related deaths were reported in the week to 21st January, 103 more than the week before. Of these 282 were in a care home, 98 at home, 32 in a hospice, 1,055 in hospital and 13 elsewhere.

The provisional UK COVID-19 death toll (as reported by PHE and ONS) for all weeks of the epidemic can be found on the Deaths tab of the Coronavirus Dashboard.

Click for ONS Coronavirus (COVID-19) latest insights: Deaths

NHS England figures for Worcestershire

The table below shows latest COVID deaths in Worcestershire hospitals reported by NHS England on 4th February 2022.

Worcestershire Cumulative deaths Past week
Acute hospitals 942 5
Care hospitals 66 1
TOTAL 1,008 6

Click for NHS COVID-19 total announced deaths

Click for Summary of Malvern numbers on the Coronavirus dashboard

Risk of COVID-19 death by age band (Delta and Omicron)

NHS England provides an analysis of COVID-19 deaths in hospital in England and Wales by age band. Shown below is a snapshot of 3,971 recent deaths for the period 7th January 2022 to 3rd February 2022.

During this period deaths from Delta probably fell while those from Omicron increased. We do not know the exact mix, but there is an indication the risk of death is moving towards those aged 80+ years, who will generally be more frail and have co-morbidities.

Age band Number of COVID deaths % of deaths
0 - 19 11  0.3
20 - 39 43 1
40 - 59 287 7
60 - 79 1,404 35
80+ 2,226 56

Relative risk of COVID-19 death by age band

The latest figures show the risk of death has fallen slightly in those aged 40  to 79 years, rising in those aged 80+.

Those aged 60+ still account for more than 90% of deaths, but remember that due to vaccination the death rate as a proportion of new cases is five to ten times lower than in 2020.

Many historic deaths are likely to have been of the vaccine-hesitant, and those with co-morbidities such as Diabetes, the frail, and those that are immuno-compromised. Pregnant mothers, the overweight and deprived individuals with a poor diet are also said to be at increased risk.

An NHS leaflet offered to patients being admitted to hospital suggests we are at higher risk of complications from COVID-19 infection if we have one or more of the following conditions:

  • Age over 70 or Male over 50;

  • Lung problems (including asthma, COPD, emphysema, bronchitis, bronchiectasis;

  • Heart disease

  • Diabetes

  • Chronic kidney disease

  • Liver disease (eg hepatitis, cirrhosis)

  • Brain or nerve problems (eg Parkinson's disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy)

  • You have a condition that increases the risk of infection

  • Take medication that affects the immune system, (eg steroids)

  • Very obese (BMI over 40)

  • Pregnancy

See link to the latest UKHSA vaccine surveillance report below which points to an analysis covering a mix of Delta and Omicron cases that also highlights that many deaths are now of vaccinated individuals by virtue of a large proportion of the population being vaccinated and the vaccines not giving 100% protection.

Click for UKHSA COVID-19 vaccine surveillance report Week 4, 27 January 2022

triangleHealthcare numbers

The UK government Coronavirus Dashboard includes important information about healthcare statistics and NHS bed occupancy.

Hospital COVID cases (UK) Number Change since last week
Patients currently in hospital 14,634 -1,515
Patients on ventilation 478 -71
Patients admitted daily 1,596 -136

Headline summary of patients in hospital reported on 6th February 2022

The trend in UK bed occupancy continues downwards.

Bed numbers by region in England

Tabulated figures for COVID bed occupancy in England can be found on the NHS England website and these give a good indication of direction of travel:

Click for NHS England COVID-19 Hospital bed Activity statistics

Note: see the latest Daily Admissions and Beds spreadsheets, then look for all COVID beds.

Region 28th January 2022 4th February 2022 15th January 2021
London 2,537 2,321 7,811
Midlands 2,582 2,358 5,890

Comparison of All beds COVID data for London and Midlands

In the last week the number of COVID-19 General and Acute beds fell by 8% in London and the Midlands.

For the same period, COVID beds in England fell from 13,462 to 12,032 a drop of 10.6%.

For comparison, the number of beds occupied during the peak of the epidemic in January 2021 is shown in red in the right hand column of the table.

Green triangleWorcestershire hospital beds

Tabulated figures for bed occupancy in Worcestershire Acute and Care hospitals can also be found on the NHS England website.

A summary can be found on the UK government Coronavirus Dashboard which reports on 4th February that between 24 January 2022 and 30 January 73 patients went into hospital with coronavirus. This shows an increase of 30.4% compared to the previous 7 days.

There were 83 patients in hospital with Coronavirus on 1 February 2022 of which 5 were ventilated beds. Roughly 31% of the peak experienced last January and 10 more than last week.

Some of these may be patients testing COVID positive after admission to hospital for other reasons.

Note: Healthcare statistics can be found on the Healthcare tab of the UK Coronavirus Dashboard. At the top of the page where it says Healthcare in United Kingdom, click the drop down arrow to select Area Type as NHS Trusts, and Area Name as Worcester Acute Hospitals.

Click to view Worcester healthcare figures


Click for Summary of Malvern numbers on the Coronavirus dashboard

Deaths in Malvern Hills

Between 29 January 2022 and 4 February 2022, there have been 7 deaths within 28 days of a positive coronavirus test.

Note: it's possible some of these were historical and linked to repeat infections not counted until 31st January 2022.

Forecast for the week ahead

Trends suggest that during the next seven days (up to 13th February) the cumulative total of UK COVID-19 cases reported by PHE on the Coronavirus Dashboard could increase by 500,000 towards 18,310,000 with the rolling average of daily new cases falling towards 70,000.

In Worcestershire up to 4,500 new cases of the Omicron COVID-19 variant can be expected, and up to 700 cases in the Malvern Hills district.

The number of UK COVID (28) deaths (as recorded by PHE) may increase by up to 1,700 towards 160,000 during the 7 days ending 13th February 2022, with the average daily death rate hovering around 240.

In the county of Worcestershire, assuming a 0.1% death rate, the 6,000 new cases this week could translate to 6 COVID deaths per week by the end of February.

Daily hospital admissions could fall a little to about 1,400.

Longer term outlook


Half term should cause cases to dip, but how fast cases fall during the next quarter is impossible to predict. At some point a background level of cases will probably be reached but we have no idea of whether that will be close to where we are now or a lot lower.

See summary of links section for UCL and IHME modelling projections.


For a fixed level of vaccination, daily cases have been a signpost to whether daily hospital admissions and deaths are going to go up or down. Based on our heuristic 'rules of thumb' hospital admissions and deaths during January appeared to be to following daily cases very roughly in the ratio:

  • Hospital admissions 1:75 of daily cases reported by PHE, lagging by 7 days, of which perhaps up to half are 'true' COVID admissions;

  • Deaths 0.18% of daily cases reported by PHE, lagging by 15 days of which perhaps only half are 'true' COVID deaths.

  • UK Hospital bed occupancy - roughly 8 times daily hospital admissions, lagging by about a fortnight.

Now daily cases include repeat infections and reported deaths are higher then expected, these estimates need further thought and revision.

Advice for SeniorsCOVID risk medium

We judge the risk of exposure to the Omicron variant still to be HIGH; see our riskometer opposite.

How this affects you will depend on your vaccination status. UKHSA say those who have had two doses plus a booster have roughly a 12% chance of being hospitalised compared to the unvaccinated.

Two doses give little or no protection.

6M people remain unvaccinated in the UK and for many time is running out; perhaps up to 6,000 will die unnecessarily in coming weeks.

Recently there have been no more than 11 COVID related deaths per week in Worcestershire which has a population of 600,000 so we currently judge the risk of death for triple vaccinated Seniors to be fairly LOW while the risk of Long COVID might be MODERATE .

In these uncertain times, when it is quite possible, despite being triple vaccinated, for Seniors to become ill with the Omicron variant of COVID-19, the simple safeguards to remember are to:

  • book your booster dose as soon as you are contacted by either your GP or the NHS; between five days and two weeks after the booster most people should be well protected from severe illness;

  • don't forget your flu jab;

  • wash your HANDS thoroughly, using soap and hot water, for 20 seconds, including after handling deliveries to your home, to kill virus picked up from contaminated surfaces (see note 1);

  • ideally wear either a well fitting FACE covering, FFP2, or N95 face mask when unavoidably near other people for example when in shops, health-care settings, and when using public transport;

  • SPACE at least 2 metres from people you don't feel safe with (see note 2);

  • preferably socialise with friends and other households outdoors in the FRESH AIR else, if you are indoors, either ventilate by keeping windows open as far as is practicable or put a HEPA air purifier in the room;

  • consider avoiding crowded indoor settings and minimise TIME near strangers;

  • self-isolate and take a Lateral Flow test if you feel unwell with cold or flu like symptoms; according to the Zoe COVID Study the current top five symptoms amongst the double vaccinated and children, in order of prevalence, are said to be runny nose, headache, sneezing, sore throat, and persistent cough, which are often hard to distinguish from a common cold - you might alternatively suffer from fever with a temperature of up to 103 deg F, and a slight reduction in sense of taste;

  • consider taking a Lateral Flow test before visiting others (see note 3);

  • respect others and give them space.


1) Wash your hands thoroughly before touching your face to avoid transferring virus from contaminated surfaces to your mouth, eyes and nose. If outdoors use an alcohol based hand gel.

2) Two metres is further than you think - roughly an arm and a walking stick away.

3) The COVID Symptom Study people suggest that if you have symptoms of a common cold there is currently a 40% chance you might have COVID.



This week

On Monday Sue Gray published a preliminary report on alleged parties at Downing Street and in Whitehall.


The media whipped itself into a frenzy, and there was a noisy debate in Parliament when the PM addressed MPs.

Sajid Javid announced the government's intention to end compulsory vaccination of NHS staff.

UKHSA amended the Coronavirus dashboard to include reinfections. Currently reinfections are said to be about 10% of cases.

The dashboard relates that caution should be used when looking at the 7-day totals, and change figures presented on the postcode search page during the next 14 days because of the step-up in cases skewing the results, and until the averages settle down.

Click for news story - COVID-19 daily dashboard amended to include reinfections

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss MP tested positive for COVID after appearing in a packed House of Commons.

On Tuesday TV presenter Phillip Schofield tested COVID positive.

On Wednesday Denmark declared the Pandemic over and lifted most COVID restrictions.

Click for BBC report - Denmark Covid restrictions lifted despite increase in cases

On Thursday Dr John Campbell discussed Denmark relaxing all restrictions and declaring the pandemic over despite sky high cases.

Click to watch video - Denmark ends pandemic

The Danes take the view that as 80% of the population is vaccinated and Omicron has not been found to be a severe disease, life can return to normal; except for the wearing of face masks in hospitals and care homes, and restrictions on unvaccinated travellers.

On Friday Dr John Campbell discussed the reduction in Intensive Care admissions resulting from Omicron displacing Delta.

Click to watch video - Omicron reducing intensive care admissions

For more detailed analysis click this link to find latest ICNARC report:

Reports on COVID intensive care beds - see intensive care national audit and research centre (ICNARC) website

Transport Minister Grant Shapps MP tested COVID positive.

On Saturday the weekly ONS insights report was published with a roundup of latest COVID data and trends:

Click for coronavirus (COVID-19) latest insights by ONS


COVID video updates

The usual charts can be found in the Zoe COVID Study and Independent SAGE weekly updates.

Click to watch Zoe COVID Symptom Study update on 3rd February 2022 presented by Tim Spector (worth watching).

Click to watch Independent SAGE update on 4th February 2022

The Independent SAGE update starts with the usual review of the charts and is followed by a discussion of ventilation, filtration and face masks.


Some groups have started meeting again in person. Attendance is gradually rising.

Overseas travel

Refer to current government advice, and prepare contingency plans in case circumstances change in the country you are visiting.

List of vaccines

Here is the updated list of COVID-19 vaccines ordered by the UK. It looks as though for now the government has settled on Pfizer as first choice with Moderna second and Astrazeneca held in reserve.

Valneva has been cancelled, and approval has not yet been sought for using Novavax in the EU and US although approval has been sought for use in third world countries.

For two doses plus boosters, only about 200M doses will be needed in 2021 and Jan/Feb 2022 for the population of the UK. The government has now signed deals to buy 114 million additional doses of the Pfizer (54M) and Moderna (60M) vaccines to use in 2022 and 2023.

Click for press announcement - Government agrees new deals to future proof vaccine rollout in light of new variant

The press announcement goes on to say that 60M doses of Novavax vaccine are expected to be delivered in 2022 and 7.5M doses of GSK/Sanofi, so there seems no intention to cancel these late arrivals.

Click for Guardian report - Novavax expected to be become fourth Covid vaccine available in UK

COVID-19 vaccine Doses ordered (million) Status
Pfizer BioNTech, two dose, -70 deg C 40+60+35 Approved, deliveries continuing, made in Belgium (EU). An additional 60M doses have been ordered for booster shots for the most vulnerable in the autumn. A further 35M doses were ordered in August 2021 for delivery in 2022.
Astrazeneca, two dose, fridge 100 Approved for those aged 30+ years; deliveries continuing. Batches made in UK, Belgium and India.
Moderna, two dose, -20 deg C 7+10 Approved. First deliveries to Wales and Scotland 7th April 2021 then England 13th April; mainly for those aged under 50 years awaiting vaccination.
Valneva, two dose 60+40
A jab from French company Valneva will be made in Livingston, West Lothian, Scotland. Order cancelled September 2021. Delivery had been expected to start in second half of 2021.
Janssen, single dose 20 Approved, a jab from Belgian firm Janssen, owned by Johnson and Johnson; UK approval 28th May. Order reduced from 30 to 20M.
Novavax 60 A jab manufactured by US firm Novavax being made in Stockton-on-Tees UK; phase III trials complete, but approval has not yet been sought in EU and US. Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK) contracted to fill and package vials. Delivery expected in 2022.
GSK Sanofi 60 Some delay due to adjusting the formula to give better protection to the elderly; expected approval and delivery of 7.5M doses in 2022.
Curevac 50 ? Contract placed with German company Feb 2021. Possible source of new variant vaccine; disappointing trial results have resulted in the company working on a second generation vaccine. Future uncertain.

Table of vaccines ordered by the UK government


TrianglePresent rate of new cases

The average rate of infection per 100,000 population per week copied from the Coronavirus Dashboard is shown in the following table.

Region  Case rate
(last week)
Case rate
(this week)
England  984 973
Wales  547 496
Scotland  470 441
Northern Ireland  1,630 1,532
London (region) 835 842
Worcestershire  1,104 1,115
Malvern Hills  977 1,202

Seven day Case Rate per 100,000 reported 6th February 2022

Cases continued to rise in the Malvern Hills, but fell a tad in Wales and Scotland.

As a yardstick we suggest a figure of below 10 can be considered LOW, so there is a long way still to go.

Back to top


How to request a COVID test

In order to protect others it is important to get a test and self isolate if you feel unwell with either classic COVID symptoms, or cold and flu like symptoms which can be caused by the Delta variant.

There are now two types of test you can get. The more accurate PCR test involving a throat and nose swab which is sent to a laboratory for analysis and the Lateral Flow Device test.

Click for government guidance on types of tests

Getting a PCR test

Click the link below for information on how to get a free NHS PCR test if you think you may have Coronavirus:


We feel the website discourages people from seeking a PCR test who don't have all the classic symptoms. If you feel strongly enough, press on answering the questions so as to get your PCR test.

In case of difficulty you can try phoning the Coronavirus contact centre by dialing 119.

Alternatively settle for a 'Nasal swab' Lateral Flow Device test in the comfort of your own home (see below).

According to Google there is a 'drive through' COVID testing station at County Hall near the Countrywide Centre, and a 'walk through' at Pershore.

There is also a COVID testing station at the Worcester Royal Hospital for screening patients before admission.

If you cannot get to these you can order a home PCR test kit.

If you test COVID positive you should self-isolate for 10 days.

Getting a Lateral Flow Device test

Lateral Flow Device tests (LFD) can either be booked at Claremont Pharmacy in Barnards Green, Evans Pharmacy in Malvern Link, or taken at home.

The test is intended to screen those who do not show the classic symptoms of COVID-19 and provides a means to check you are 'virus free' at home - either before visiting an elderly person, going to work, or attending a crowded event.  It also provides a means to check whether or not you have Coronavirus if you are feeling poorly with cold and flu like symptoms.

COVID Lateral Flow DeviceYou can collect home test kits, for example packaged as the COVID-19 Self-Test (Rapid Antigen Test) in boxes of 7 tests, from Malvern library, the Co-op, and most pharmacies such as Boots and Murrays in Church Street, Claremont House and Lloyds in Barnards Green, Murrays at Prospect View, Evans and Murrays in Malvern Link, and Boots and Morrisons on the Enigma Retail Park.

If collecting from a pharmacy you now have to go on-line and get a collection code to present to the pharmacy in order to obtain a pack of 7 tests. This involves giving NHS Test and Trace your email and/or mobile phone number and address.


The LFD now comes in two versions.

  • The Throat and Nose Swab kit;

  • The Nose Swab only kit (Orient Gene, Acon Flowflex and MP Biomedicals).

 (Lateral Flow Device cassette shown on the right).

ACON Flowflex comes in a blue and white pack.

Orient Gene comes in a green and white pack.

MP Biomedicals come in a blue, white and grey pack.

Click for instructions for using the LFD test kits

COVID lateral flow test leaflet

Leaflet at Boots the Chemist

The new Nasal swab test kit which only requires a nose swab is the easiest to use and the best one to get but it is not yet widely available. On 10th November we found Boots in Church Street and Malvern Library were still supplying the old Throat and Nose kit; Murrays in Church Street had the new kits and Malvern library thought the library in St John's Worcester might have the new kits.

Click for NHS information on Rapid Lateral Flow Test sites and collection sites in Malvern

Hint: to see the list, click on 'filter' and then 'pick up sites for test kits' checkbox.

Click for WCC info about Lateral Flow Tests

In our opinion, many Seniors will find the classic Throat and Nose Swab home test kit difficult to use as you need to rub the tonsils or thereabouts with the swab-stick without touching the tongue, teeth, cheeks, gums or any other surface before swabbing the nose. Doing this standing in front of a mirror on your own without gagging while holding a torch in the other hand, won't be easy unless you have a steady hand and good eyesight.

The Nose Swab kit is by far the best one for testing yourself at home.

If you test COVID positive you should isolate and take a more accurate PCR test to confirm the result.

NHS Test and Trace want people to report the result of their home LFD tests within 24 hours at:


This helps NHS Test and Trace monitor where the issue of the free LFD tests is proving most effective and the spread of the disease.

However, it's tedious to enter your Lateral Flow Test result on the government website and we imagine many people now don't bother.

COVID Lateral Flow test kit

Nose swab home test kit obtained from Murrays


About the COVID Symptom Study app (Zoe)

COVID app logoYou can help others by downloading the COVID Symptom Study app onto your smart-phone or Ipad and reporting how you feel either daily, or as you are able. Note there is no desktop PC version for Windows.

For further details click this link: https://covid19.joinzoe.com

The Zoe app, which is easy to use, allows you to report whether or not you are feeling well and if you have had a test for COVID. This helps Kings College London monitor the spread and symptoms of the disease and give advice to government. This is an important source of data as we progress through the EXIT wave.

There are questions allowing you to enter your vaccine type and whether any side effects; this now includes boosters and flu jabs.


About the NHS COVID-19 contact tracing app (England)

Release of the NHS COVID-19 contact tracing app for Apple and Android smartphones was announced on 24th September 2020.

Click this link for NHS Coronavirus app information

If you have been close to someone who has tested COVID positive, your smart-phone will be pinged and you may be advised to self-isolate

The period for self isolating keeps changing.

You can now take an LFD test from 6 days after the day your symptoms started, or the day your test was taken if you did not have symptoms, and another LFD test at least 24 hours later.

If both these test results are negative, and you do not have a high temperature, you may end your self-isolation.

Otherwise the isolation period is 10 days.

Bear in mind some individuals may take much longer to fully recover.

Note: be aware triple vaccinated individuals can still catch the Delta variant of the Omicron variant and pass it on to others.


About the NHS app and Covid Pass

An NHS COVID Pass shows your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination details and/or test results. This is your COVID-19 status. You may be asked to show your pass to travel abroad, or at events and venues in England asking for proof of your COVID-19 status.

For large UK events you may get in either by the fact:

  • you are fully-vaccinated;

  • you have had COVID as recorded by a positive PCR test;

  • you have taken and reported a recent Lateral Flow test.

You will need the NHS app installed on your smartphone and be registered with the NHS in order to display your vaccination status.

Note: this is not the NHS COVID-19 app

If you don't have a smartphone you should be able to login from a PC to obtain a printed copy.

Click to login from a desktop computer or laptop

You can use your NHS  login when signing in to report the result of Lateral Flow Device tests taken at home, which must be done within 24 hours.



About COVID symptoms

Article about the effects of Coronavirus on the human body


Reporting and how to obtain a test

How to get a test


About joining the Zoe COVID Symptom Study:




UK government Coronavirus guidance

COVID-19 Response: Autumn and Winter Plan 2021 for England

UK Health and Security Agency (UKHSA) website


COVID Alert states

Guidance on UK COVID-19 alert level methodology: an overview

COVID-19 Alert Level lowered to 3 on 10th May 2021



Guidance on tiers: what you need to know

Government postcode checker to find tier for other areas



UK government COVID-19: Omicron daily overview

UK government Coronavirus Dashboard

Coronavirus Dashboard Interactive Map

ONS data on deaths in England and Wales (Excel spreadsheet)

NHS England COVID-19 Daily Deaths

NHS England COVID-19 Hospital Admissions

NHS England vaccination statistics

Reports on COVID intensive care beds - see intensive care national audit and research centre (ICNARC) website

Worcestershire Coronavirus Dashboard

Worcestershire COVID-19 Vaccinations Dashboard


HSA COVID-19 vaccine weekly surveillance reports

Information about NHS hospital bed numbers: past, present, future


A glimpse of the worldwide vaccination situation can be found on the Our World in Data website.

Click for chart showing % vaccinated



A forecast of the progression of the COVID-19 epidemic can be found on a University College London (UCL) website.

Click for UCL Long-term forecasting of the COVID-19 epidemic

A projection of the future COVID-19 death toll and daily deaths can be found on The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation website. 

Click for IHME projection of COVID-19 deaths



Coronavirus (COVID-19) latest insights by ONS

A live roundup of the latest data and trends about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic from the ONS and other sources.


The bigger picture

Worldometer summary of coronavirus cases worldwide

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control info


World Health Organisation info



Window on the USA

Centre for Disease Control (CDC)

American Association of Retired People (AARP)





Worcestershire County Council COVID-19 information:


Here you will find a useful link,

'Website: Number of new cases by date in Worcestershire'

which displays interesting COVID charts and statistics for Worcestershire

COVID Outbreak Control Plan



Spanish Flu

Dr Jeff Kildea's commentary about the 1919 outbreak of Spanish Flu in Australia


Views of Martin McKee, Professor of European Public Health

Follow Martin McKee on Twitter


SAGE membership

Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE)


Scottish government:

Link to Scottish Government website

Link to Postcode checker for COVID restrictions by protection level in areas of Scotland


Welsh Government:

Guidance on COVID alert levels in Wales


The Malvern Hills logo

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The interpretations and opinions expressed are our own