Boris Johnson wants every adult in the country to have their first jab by July 19 (Image: AFP via Getty Images)
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Coronavirus cases in the UK have shot up by 26% in a week, with 7,673 new infections today.
It is up on the 6,048 cases recorded last week, although deaths were lower today than last Tuesday.
A further 10 fatalities have been announced today, compared with 13 a week ago.
The latest figures come a day after Boris Johnson's announcement that lockdown restrictions will be extended for four weeks.
Measures were due to end on June 21, however the Prime Minister has now pushed back the date to July 19.
The Government took the decision in response to growing concerns about soaring coronavirus cases and hospitalisations.
The Indian variant, which is more transmissible than the Alpha strain, is behind the latest surge in Covid infections.
The Indian variant is behind a surge of cases in the UK
(Image: Getty Images)
A previous study by Public Health England (PHE) found that the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine is 88% effective against the variant first identified in India (the Delta variant) after two doses, compared with 93% efficacy against the variant first identified in Kent (the Alpha variant).
Meanwhile, the AstraZeneca jab was 60% effective, compared with 66% against the Alpha variant over the same period.
Both vaccines were 33% effective against symptomatic disease from the Delta variant three weeks after the first dose, compared with about 50% against the Alpha variant.
PHE also found that unvaccinated people have twice the risk of hospital admission with the Delta variant as the Alpha variant.
Mr Johnson yesterday told a Downing Street briefing that delaying the end of lockdown could give the NHS "a few more crucial weeks to get those remaining jabs into the arms of those who need them".
He said: "By Monday July 19, we will aim to have double jabbed around two thirds of the adult population including everyone over 50, all the vulnerable, all frontline health and care workers and everyone over 40 who received their first dose by mid-May.
"To do this we will now accelerate the second jabs for those over 40, just as we did for the vulnerable groups, so they get the maximum protection as fast as possible.
"And we will bring forward our target to give every adult in the country a first dose by July 19, that is including young people over the age of 18, with 23 and 24-year-olds invited to book jabs from tomorrow so we reduce transmission among groups that mix the most and to give the NHS that extra time."