The number of Covid cases among children aged between five and nine has rocketed by 50% in a week.
A total of 722.9 new infections per 100,000 people in that age group were recorded in England in the seven days to November 14, up from 484.5.
The rate for 10 to 19-year-olds has jumped 21% to 694.2.
The increases are likely to be because of pupils returning to school after the half-term holiday in late October.
Professor Steven Riley, from the UK Health Security Agency which released the figures, said: “Rates of Covid continue to increase in younger age groups, and hospitalisations remain highest in those aged 85 and over.
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“More people than ever are eligible for second and booster doses and it is as important as ever to get vaccinated or receive a booster jab as soon as you are offered one…
“If you have any Covid symptoms, stay at home and get a PCR test as soon as possible.”
It comes as figures yesterday showed the UK’s daily coronavirus cases reached the highest level for four weeks, with 46,807 new infections. There were also 199 more deaths.
Across the UK there were 395.4 new Covid cases per 100,000 people in the week up to November 13, the Government’s latest figures reveal. This was an increase of 11% on the week before.
In England, case rates have also jumped for all age groups between 20 and 59, though the week-on-week rise is smaller than for children. Infections have fallen in the over-60 age groups.
Rates have risen in all regions in England except the North East.
The South West has the highest level at 485.3 cases per 100,000 people – a jump of 17%.
London has the lowest at 275.2, although this is also a 17% increase.
The level of Covid hospital admissions in England stood at 7.6 per 100,000 people in the week to November 14, which is unchanged from the previous week.