This is the 64th of a series of bulletins produced by ISE to update members on key data and policy relating to Covid-19. This bulletin covers the period 1st October – 14th October 2021.
You can access all of the Covid-19 bulletins on ISE insights.
Latest Covid-19 data and news
Source: Government Covid-19 dashboard.
Please note – October figures in the top graph only currently include data until 08/10/21 for hospital admissions and 12/10/21 for cases and deaths, hence the large decrease between September and October shown. In addition, for this reason, the average daily hospital admission rate for the most recent week in the second graph is based on data from 04/10/21 – 08/10/21
The UK has now had almost 8.3m identified Covid-19 cases and 161,798 deaths (with Covid on the death certificate) in total. Covid-19 cases have remained broadly stable in the last 6 weeks, averaging at around 34,500 new infections reported a day. Despite this, a slight reduction in Covid-19 related deaths and hospitalisations has been observed in the last few weeks.
Source: Government Covid-19 dashboard.
Please note – the previous Covid-19 bulletin showed the vaccination status of the over-16 UK population. Vaccinations are now being offered to children of 12 and above, so we are using this as our population. Therefore, caution is recommended when comparing the figures in the two bulletins.
79% of the 12+ UK population are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19, with another 7% having had one dose. 14% remain unvaccinated.
- A report by MPs claims that the UK government’s early approach to the pandemic and delay in introducing the first lockdown cost thousands of lives and was one of the worst ever public health failures. Guardian political correspondent discusses this on a podcast here.
- Pregnant women urged to get vaccine as it’s revealed that they make up 1 in 6 critically ill Covid-19 patients.
- Travel to EU countries expected to become easier as NHS Covid Pass will soon be recognised.
- Schools encouraged to have assessments each term as a contingency plan, in case exams can’t go ahead again next summer.
- Author of the Higher Education Policy Institute calls for maths, humanities and a foreign language to be made mandatory at A-Level.
- UK Government considers bringing back end of KS3 SATS to prevent pupils losing focus and to act as a fairer assessment for disadvantaged students.
- David Willetts, former universities minister, says taxpayers are footing too much of the bill for unpaid student loads and is behind the plan to lower the earning threshold for repayments.
- Bank of England unlikely to raise interest rates by end of year due to slowing UK economy.
- Job vacancies at highest levels since records began in 2001, with the largest increases in the retail sector and in motor vehicle repair.
- Unemployment rates expected to rise due to job losses as furlough scheme ends.
- Special visa schemes, like the current relaxations for HGV drivers, will not be extended to other sectors experiencing staff shortages.
- Rishi Sunak has pledged £500m to extend the Kickstart scheme for young people until March and to help unemployed over 50s and those leaving the furlough scheme back into work.
- 7 in 10 companies in London affected by skilled labour shortage.
- ONS October Labour Market overview continues to show signs of recovery, with another monthly increase in employees on payroll.
Changing patterns of work
- Cardiff, Edinburgh and London named as the cities showing the least evidence of commuter patterns returning to pre-pandemic levels.
Student recruitment and development
- ISE’s Tristram Hooley explores the challenges that students from a Black heritage background face and outlines what employers should be doing to help.
- Charlie Ball summarises recent data and reports from the graduate labour market.
- Watchdog report claims that universities ignoring poor spelling and grammar will inflate grades and give new graduates a disadvantage in the labour market.
- Newton shares insights into how its graduate onboarding process remained successful during the pandemic.