The number of deaths registered in England and Wales over one week has fallen below the five-year average for the first time since the week ending March 13.

New figures from the Office for National Statistics also reveal the true number of deaths linked to coronavirus in England is at least 8,919 higher than the government’s figures.

The difference between the numbers published by the ONS and those given by the Department of Health is because of different methods of counting and reporting.

The ONS death figures are based on the number of deaths registered in England and Wales, where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate as “deaths involving Covid-19”.

This means there is a lag in compiling the ONS figures due to the time it takes for death registrations to be completed and processed.

The ONS said: “Our weekly deaths data for England show of all deaths occurring up to 19 June (registered up to 27 June), 47,127 involved Covid-19

“For the same period the Department of Health reported 38,208 COVID-19 deaths .

The weekly death data up to June 12 for England showed, 46,425 involved COVID-19.”

For the same period the Department of Health reported 37,240 Covid-19 deaths.

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