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June 24, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — Data from Britain’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that deaths involving influenza and pneumonia in England and Wales vastly outstripped those related to COVID-19 in the week ending June 11, the date of their most recent figures.

The latest data from the ONS confirmed a total of 84 deaths related to the novel coronavirus, one of the lowest recorded weekly levels since the onset of the crisis in March 2020. At the same time, deaths in which flu and pneumonia were at least contributing factors numbered as many as 1,163, almost 14 times higher than COVID-19 related deaths, yet still down from the five-year average of 1,704 for that week. Of the 84 deaths involving COVID-19, the ONS listed the virus as the “underlying cause of death” in 66 cases, with 292 of flu and pneumonia cases as the “underlying cause of death.”

A similar picture was painted last week, when the ONS released its figures for the week ending June 4. At that time, coronavirus deaths were up slightly, totalling 98. This figure, though, was still around nine times lower than the registered flu and pneumonia deaths, which reached 873 for the first week in June.

The Telegraph reported that this week’s figures mean coronavirus deaths account for just 0.8 percent of total deaths in England and Wales, which is down from 1.3 percent the week before. Speaking to the Telegraph, emeritus professor of applied statistics at The Open University, Kevin McConway, said that COVID-related deaths “are down in most age groups and most regions, comparing the latest week with either the previous week or the week before that.”

In fact, “[d]eaths involving COVID-19 made up just eight out of every thousand total deaths in the most recent week,” the former professor said.

Though COVID infections in the U.K. appear to be on the rise (around 2,000 positive tests recorded in the week ending June 6), this has not corresponded to a proportionate increase in hospitalizations and deaths. According to a former chief scientific adviser to the U.K. government, Sir David King, a large proportion of those testing positive for the virus have already been double jabbed against COVID-19, arguing that as many as 400 “fully vaccinated” citizens experience breakthrough infection every day.

After cautioning that the perceived rise in infections is “not good news,” McConway admitted that “it is a little encouraging that the increase in cases hasn’t yet led to any substantial increase in deaths involving COVID and, judging by these ONS figures, if anything there’s a decrease in deaths.”

Figures from the ONS for the week ending May 28 demonstrated that the U.K. was seeing an overall 3.1 percent reduction in overall deaths compared to the national five-year average. Additionally, in 11 out of the 12 weeks before May 28, England and Wales experienced a trend of fewer deaths than the five-year average, regardless of climbing “cases” of COVID-19.

Despite predicting figures of dwindling deaths and hospitalizations arising from or with COVID-19, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson delayed the promised reopening of the economy and lifting of all legal restrictions by four weeks.

Britons were originally told that June 21 would be the date to mark as “Freedom Day,” the day when the government would cease enforcing mask mandates, lift capacity impositions from businesses, and again allow normal gatherings without fear of reprisal.

Johnson announced that Brits should instead expect to have their freedom back by July 19 on account of advice from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) that predicted a surge in positive COVID tests, had the June 21 opening gone ahead as planned. SAGE estimated that, if the increase in spread of the Indian variant continued, infections would rocket from around 8,000 people per day to more than 60,000 in the U.K., beginning early July.

SAGE did not complement their projections of an increased infection rate with data indicating a proportional increase in deaths or hospitalizations, nevertheless the Johnson government acted to delay reopening by four weeks. Johnson did suggest that a review of the data could trigger a “two-week break clause” in the July 19 reopening schedule, allowing for a slightly earlier unlocking of restrictions if the data conforms with government criteria.