Dr Mike Tildesley, of the University of Warwick and a member of the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Modeling Group (Spi-M), said the latest Covid-19 case figures were “cautious good news” which could indicate that the Omicron wave “rotates about”.
Asked about the latest UK data, he told BBC Breakfast: “I would cautiously say good news – it looks like across the country cases seem to be coming down.
“We had very, very high case numbers in late December and early January – we peaked at around 200,000 at one point. Now we seem to be a bit beyond that.
“Hospital admissions are still relatively high, although there is evidence that they may be leveling off or falling in London, which is cautiously good news.
“I would say we probably need about an extra week of data to really see the effect of kids going back to school – we’re still only two weeks away since kids went back to school – but if we still see that over the next week or so, I’d be pretty confident that we see that wave turn around.”
Asked if the changes in the testing rules may have contributed to the drop in cases, he added: “Yesterday was a Sunday and we were in the region of 70,000 (cases), which is much lower to previous Sundays, so I think even taking into account any changes in testing, I think it’s pretty clear that the Omicron wave is slowing down.”