April 14, 2020 - 9:48am

New data out this morning from the Office of National Statistics shows that in the week ending 3rd April, the total number of deaths in England and Wales shot up dramatically above the average for the past five years. This represents a much greater increase than the previous week ending March 29th.

Amid all the uncertainty about deaths *from* Covid-19 versus deaths *with* Covid-19, the total number of deaths provides a rude measure of the toll that the epidemic is taking.