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Introduction

During this period of high infections, Office for National Statistics (ONS) are publishing early headline results from the Coronavirus (COVID-19) infection survey on Wednesdays. This release accompanies a limited dataset which includes estimates of positivity by country and variant analysis by country. This is a summary of those headline estimates for Wales. This does not replace the full COVID-19 infection survey release that is published every Friday at 12pm. A statement explaining the need for the additional headline estimates has been produced by ONS.

Today, ONS have published estimates of the numbers of people testing positive for COVID-19 in the week ending 29 January 2022.

Main points

  • In Wales, the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 increased in the week ending 29 January 2022. It is estimated that 139,000 people in Wales had COVID-19 (95% credible interval: 119,800 to 159,300), equating to around 1 in 20 people.
  • COVID-19 infections compatible with the Omicron continue to be the most common variant in Wales.

The numbers of people testing positive for COVID-19 have remained high in England and increased in the latest week in Wales and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 decreased over two weeks, but the trend was uncertain in the most recent week.

UK comparison

  • In England, the percentage of people testing positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) remained high in the week ending 29 January 2022. It is estimated that 2,633,100 people in England had COVID-19 (95% credible interval: 2,544,100 to 2,725,100), equating to around 1 in 20 people.
  • In Northern Ireland, the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 increased in the week ending 29 January 2022. It is estimated that 136,300 people in Northern Ireland had COVID-19 (95% credible interval: 118,200 to 155,200), equating to around 1 in 15 people.
  • In Scotland, the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 decreased in the two weeks up to 29 January 2022, but the trend was uncertain in the most recent week. It is estimated that 185,100 people in Scotland had COVID-19 (95% credible interval: 162,100 to 210,800), equating to around 1 in 30 people.
Image
Chart showing the official estimates for the percentage of people testing positive through nose and throat swabs from 19 December 2021 to 29 January 2022 for the four countries of the UK.

Quality and methodology information

Modelled results are provisional and subject to revision.

These statistics refer to infections occurring in private households. The figures exclude infections reported in hospitals, care homes and/or other communal establishments.

A credible interval gives an indication of the uncertainty of an estimate from data analysis. 95% credible intervals are calculated so that there is a 95% probability of the true value lying in the interval.

Cases are identified as being compatible with known variants of COVID-19 based on their genetic patterns. Variants of Concern and Variants of Interest have recently been relabelled by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Further information on the identification of variants in the survey can be found on the ONS website.

The majority of infections are compatible with the Omicron BA.1 variant, therefore we are presenting the total infections.

Well-being of Future Generations Act (WFG)

The Well-being of Future Generations Act 2015 is about improving the social, economic, environmental and cultural wellbeing of Wales. The Act puts in place seven wellbeing goals for Wales. These are for a more equal, prosperous, resilient, healthier and globally responsible Wales, with cohesive communities and a vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language. Under section (10)(1) of the Act, the Welsh Ministers must (a) publish indicators (“national indicators”) that must be applied for the purpose of measuring progress towards the achievement of the wellbeing goals, and (b) lay a copy of the national indicators before Senedd Cymru. Under section 10(8) of the Well-being of Future Generations Act, where the Welsh Ministers revise the national indicators, they must as soon as reasonably practicable (a) publish the indicators as revised and (b) lay a copy of them before the Senedd. These national indicators were laid before the Senedd in 2021. The indicators laid on 14 December 2021 replace the set laid on 16 March 2016.

Information on the indicators, along with narratives for each of the well-being goals and associated technical information is available in the Wellbeing of Wales report.

Further information on the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.

The statistics included in this release could also provide supporting narrative to the national indicators and be used by public services boards in relation to their local wellbeing assessments and local wellbeing plans.

Next update

9 February 2022

Contact details

Statistician: Sean White
Telephone: 0300 025 0822
Email: kas.covid19@gov.wales

Media: 0300 025 8099

SFR 32/2022

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