The UK reported a massive 226,524 more Covid cases on Monday as weekly infections jumped by 37 per cent.
The latest daily figure is the biggest ever recorded in the UK, but includes positive tests registered over the weekend.
The number is more than 50,000 higher than the 170,985 cases reported last Monday.
Some 607,737 cases have been reported over the past seven days, which is 36.8 per cent higher than the number of confirmed infections over the previous seven days.
Another 169 deaths within 28 days of a positive Covid test were also reported on Monday, taking the UK’s official death toll to 163,679.
Another 786 deaths have been reported over the past week, 60 higher than the previous seven days – a rise of 8.3 per cent.
The number of hospital patients with Covid is also on the rise, with 12,507 admitted in the past seven days, 2,506 – or 25.1 per cent – more than the previous seven days.
However the number of seriously ill patients on ventilators remains relatively flat. Some 287 were reported to be requiring mechanical ventilation on Monday, which is far below the Omicron wave peak in November, when on a number of days more than 1,000 were on ventilators.
About 300,000 people a day in the UK are describing symptoms of Covid and experts believe there could be three million active cases in the UK, due to the more infectious BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron and ending of restrictions.
More than 11,500 inpatients in hospital in England have tested positive for Covid, but Health Secretary Sajid Javid said “60 per cent are not there because of Covid” but just happen to be carrying the virus.