Of the 151 places listed by NHS Digital, only Plymouth, Torbay, Derby and St Helens saw infections rise over the latest period measured, and all by only a relatively small amount.
These most recent figures are for the seven-day rolling average up to January 14, and the decrease is a comparison with the seven-day rolling average to the previous day.
The number in brackets is the number of cases per 100,000 people. For context, the government’s own threshold for quarantining overseas travellers is 20 cases per 100,000 people – meaning these figures are still extremely high even if they have slightly fallen.
Where cases are still rising
Plymouth 7% (293.8 cases per 100,000 people)
Torbay 2% (234.1)
Derby 2% (648.7)
St Helens 1% (806.3)
At a regional level, cases continue to decrease across England, with London, the East and the South-East seeing drops of around a third.
London -34% (670.4 cases per 100,000 people)
East -32% (508.9)
South East -29% (485.3)
North East -24% (324.4)
Yorkshire and The Humber -22% (251.4)
South West -15% (326.8)
East Midlands -14% (393.0)
North West -13% (527.5)
West Midlands -11% (553.5)
The figures suggest the effects of lockdown are now being seen but despite the positive trend, case numbers remain sky-high in many areas and some hospitals are still facing an unprecedented crisis.
The lag between infection and the onset of severe illness means hospitalisations and deaths will likely continue to rise for a number of weeks.
Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Simon Stevens said: “The facts are very clear and I’m not going to sugar-coat them, hospitals are under extreme pressure and staff are under extreme pressure.
“Since Christmas Day we’ve seen another 15,000 increase in the in-patients in hospitals across England, that’s the equivalent of filling 30 hospitals full of coronavirus patients.
“Staggeringly, every thirty seconds across England another patient is being admitted to hospital with coronavirus.”
Elsewhere, there is more encouraging news – Stevens said 140 vaccination jabs were now being delivered “every minute”.
We are averaging 140 jabs a minute. The @NHSuk family @RoyalAirForce @RoyalNavy @BritishArmy The volunteer army are knocking the ball out of the ball park. Lots done, much more to do. Massive thank you 🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽💉💉💉
— Nadhim Zahawi (@nadhimzahawi) January 17, 2021
More than 3.5 million people in the UK have now received their first dose of a vaccine and some 324,000 doses were administered in the space of 24 hours.
Boris Johnson has set a target for itself of vaccinating two million people a week.
The government is aiming to vaccinate the most vulnerable 14 million people by February 15 and Dominic Raab said on Sunday he hopes every adult in the UK will be offered a first dose of a coronavirus vaccine by September.
He also said a “gradual”easing of restrictions could begin in “early spring”.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.