UK's rate of COVID-19 infection slowing

With just a month until Britain's post-Brexit future begins and trade talks with the European Union still deadlocked, the UK government on Tuesday urged firms to prepare as it scrambles to finish essential infrastructure. (Photo by Tolga Akmen / AFP)

The UK's rate of growth in coronavirus cases has dropped to a range of 0.8-1.0, according to the British government on Friday.

The rate of growth, or R number, shows how quickly the virus is spreading -- or shrinking -- by indicating how many people an infected person goes on to infect.

Friday's R number is the lowest since August, which means the number of new infections is actually decreasing by 1-3%.

On Thursday, the UK passed 60,000 deaths from COVID-19.

UK government data released on Friday showed that there were 16,298 new cases of people testing positive for coronavirus over the past 24 hours across the UK.

This is a drop of 15,943, or 13.6%, over the last week. The total number of confirmed cases now stands at 1,690,432.

The data also showed that there were further 504 deaths in the past day -- a fall of 200, or 6.1% -- raising the total number of fatalities to 60,617.

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