/One in 400 people in England has coronavirus

One in 400 people in England has coronavirus

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One in 400 people in England has the Covid-19 virus, a survey of nearly 11,000 people in households suggests.

They were asked to carry out swab tests over the two weeks up to 10 May.

This indicates about 148,000 people in England could be currently infected – 0.27% of the population.

But those tested did not include hospital patients or people living in care homes, where rates of Covid-19 are likely to be much higher, Office for National Statistics figures show.

Just 33 of the 11,000 people – in only 30 of more than 5,000 households – tested positive in this snapshot survey.

And those 30 households were several times more likely to include health or care workers than those in other sectors.

This is a pilot study of households which will grow to test 25,000 people for the virus in private households over time.

It will also be expanded to include people from all four UK nations.

The study is important for estimating how many people have a coronavirus infection at a given point in time, with or without symptoms.

The figures will also help health officials estimate the rate of transmission of the infection, or how many people one infected person is likely to pass it onto, also called the R number.

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