Boris Johnson recognised the “terrible toll” of coronavirus on the UK after official figures showed more than 150,000 people have now died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19.
With a total of 150,057 deaths, the UK became the seventh country to pass the milestone, following the US, Brazil, India, Russia, Mexico and Peru.
In a tweeted statement, the British prime minister said: “Coronavirus has taken a terrible toll on our country and today the number of deaths recorded has reached 150,000.
“Each and every one of those is a profound loss to the families, friends and communities affected and my thoughts and condolences are with them.
“Our way out of this pandemic is for everyone to get their booster or their first or second dose if they haven’t yet.”
On Saturday, the UK reported 146,390 new infections, down from 178,250 cases on Friday.
The number of new Covid-19 deaths reported was 313, up from 229, the official figures showed.
Cases have surged in Britain in recent weeks, though death rates have been lower than during previous waves of the pandemic.
About 1.22 million people in the UK tested positive for the virus in the past seven days, a rise of 10.6 per cent on the week before.
The number of deaths was 1,271, up 38.3 per cent on the toll one week before.
This took the fatality toll to 150,057.
In Britain, the toll refers to fatalities recorded within 28 days of a positive test.
The UK Health Security Agency published new figures for England on Friday.
They are the first estimates since December 23.
The growth rate for infections is now estimated to be between 3 and 6 per cent per day. The previous estimate was between 0 and 3 per cent.
Separate figures published by the Office for National Statistics show 174,000 deaths registered in the UK as a whole mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate.
A total of 18,454 people were in hospital in the UK with the disease as of January 6, government figures show.