Recent and alarming data shows that Manchester now has the highest rate of coronavirus infections after new cases have more than doubled.
Over the last seven days to Thursday, 2,740 new cases have been documented in Manchester, which takes the city from 223.2 cases to 495.6 cases per 100,000 people according to Public Health England.
The huge jump in cases raises the question as to whether or not the increased lockdown procedures - put in place at the start of August - have really been effective.
Manchester isn’t the only city facing a massive surge in coronavirus cases as Liverpool has risen to 456.4 cases per 100,000 people after a reported 2,273 new cases.
Knowsley is up next going from a reported 300.3 cases per 100,000 to 452.1, with 682 new cases.
Other areas that have seen a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases include Newcastle Upon Tyne, Nottingham, Leeds and Sheffield with Leeds recording a whopping 2,177 new cases.
Adding to the mix, Public Health England has also revealed that as many as 15, 841 cases have been left out of reports between September 25th and October 2nd. The cases have not only been missing from documented data but also from the NHS’s Test and Trace app meaning those who had come into contact with COVID-19 infected persons were not notified in due time.
However, the PHE insists that those who got tested received their results as normal and those who tested positive for the virus were told to isolate.
Test and Trace and PHE medical advisor Susan Hopkins admitted:
All outstanding cases were immediately transferred to the contact tracing system by 1am on 3 October. And a thorough public health risk assessment was undertaken to ensure outstanding cases were prioritised for contact tracing effectively.
The delay means that cases were not referred to the Test and Trace app until Saturday which was up to a week after some of the tests were taken. That would mean that people who came into contact with those infected were not notified and may have already become infectious without realising.
Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham, recently stated:
We need a bit of a reset here so that people can clearly understand what's being asked. I certainly feel this week that we've reached a bit of a turning point with all of this. The Government are really in danger of losing the public in the North of England. And actually, if they carry on imposing restrictions on the North without proper support for the businesses and the employees affected in the North, we will see a winter of levelling down and the North-South divide getting bigger.