The R number in the UK is estimated to have gone up to between 1.1 and 1.3, according to the SAGE group of government advisers.
The growth rate range of COVID-19 is estimated to be between +1% to +6%.
Last week, the number was put at between 1.1 and 1.2 with a growth rate of between between 1% and 4%.
When England emerged from November’s lockdown the number was 0.8 -1 – the lowest since August.
The reproduction number (R) is the average number of secondary infections produced by a single infected person.
An R number of 1 means that on average every person who is infected will infect 1 other person, meaning the total number of infections is stable. If R is 2, on average, each infected person infects 2 more people. If R is 0.5 then on average for each 2 infected people, there will be only 1 new infection.
The news comes on the day the government warned more parts of England could wake up in Tier 4 from Boxing Day – as fears grow over the spread of the new VUI-202012/01 mutation of coronavirus.
When the prime minister announced his Tier 4 restrictions, he warned the new variant alone could increase the R value by more than 0.4.
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