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Weekly death toll below 100 for first time since lockdown

THE weekly coronavirus death toll has fallen below 100 for the first time since lockdown began in England and Wales, official figures show.

There were 78 deaths registered in the week ending September 4 — 23 fewer than the previous week, the Office for National Statistics said.

However, the bank holiday on August 31 would have contributed to a lower number of registrations, it said.

ONS data show dips in registered deaths from all causes in the weeks ending May 8 and May 29 — which both contained bank holidays.

It is the 20th consecutive week that the number of registered deaths involving Covid-19 has fallen, and the lowest number since the week ending March 13, when the toll was just five.

All figures are provisional and based on death registrations, which can result in a lag between the date the person dies and when it is recorded.

Over the past week daily cases have risen. It is not yet known what impact this will have on the death toll.

ONS figures show there were 74 Covid-19 deaths in England in the week ending September 4, four in Wales, three in Northern Ireland and two in Scotland. The number of deaths registered was below the five-year average in all regions in England, and Wales. But while deaths in hospitals, care homes and other locations were below the five-year average, deaths in private homes continue to exceed it.

Some 52,420 deaths involving Covid-19 had occurred in England and Wales up to September 4, and had been registered by September 12.

Last week Scottish figures showed 4,231 Covid deaths had been registered in Scotland up to September 6, while 877 occurred in Northern Ireland up to September 4 (and were registered up to September 9). It means 57,528 Covid deaths have been registered in the UK.