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Admissions of people with Covid to hospitals in England have begun to rise again, raising concerns about a new wave, according to new NHS data.

According to John Roberts of Covid Actuaries group, which was formed in response to the pandemic, hospital admission rate stopped falling after a period of going down.

Weekly admissions increased by 4% across England as of 5 June, according to data released on Tuesday.

“Yes, we could be due for another wave,” Mr. Roberts responded, “but…how big that wave will be and how serious that wave will be in terms of hospitalization and deaths is very difficult to know at this level.”

His remarks follow warnings from European experts about the spread of Covid variants BA.5 and BA.4.

As of June 5, the weekly average of Covid patient hospital admissions was 531, covering only hospitals in England.

Mr. Roberts forecasted that the UK would revert to a “growth scenario.”

He claimed that the decrease in admissions was “significant,” and that infection data supported his claim. “However, the size of the wave will determine its significance,” he added.

“Unless they have very specific health conditions,” Mr. Roberts added, “the spring booster campaign is for people over 75.” A large population of people under the age of 75 does not have the benefit of a 2nd booster after having their first booster for about six months. Perhaps we should reconsider if another wave is on its way.”

There is no distinction in the figures between patients admitted for Covid and those who tested positive for Covid after admission. This information will be made public on Thursday.

As a result of a relaxation in infection control requirements, hospitals are no more required to test non-symptomatic patients on admission.

In a letter dated June 1, NHS England informed all hospitals that they should resume pre-pandemic visiting arrangements after most providers limited visits in response to the pandemic.

Due to an increase in the BA.5 and BA.4 Covid variants on May 12, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control predicted a new wave in the coming weeks.

Although there is no evidence that the variants are more severe, the European Public Health Agency anticipates a “significant increase” in Covid cases in Europe “in coming weeks and months.”

“Based on the limited data presently available, no large increase in infection severity is expected when compared to the circulating varients BA.1 and BA.2,” the researchers write. However, if the number of Covid cases increases significantly, hospital and ICU admissions are likely to rise, as they have in previous waves.”

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