Coronavirus: UK deaths reach 437 after rise in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
The number of deaths from coronavirus in the UK has risen to 437 after further fatalities were confirmed in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Six more deaths in Scotland take the total there to 22, and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said there are 51 people now in intensive care who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or are suspected to have it.
Wales has announced five more coronavirus deaths, also taking its total to 22, and Northern Ireland said its total had increased to seven.
NHS England announced 83 deaths from COVID-19 on Tuesday and it will update its tally later on Wednesday.
The UK’s coronavirus death toll as it stands:
- England – 386 deaths
- Scotland – 22 deaths
- Wales – 22 deaths
- Northern Ireland – 7 deaths
More than 8,000 people have tested positive in the UK, including Prince Charles, whose diagnosis was announced earlier.
The Department for Health and Social Care will refresh the UK total for deaths, confirmed cases and tests later.
The number of cases and deaths is expected to continue to rise as the UK waits to feel the impact of a nationwide lockdown enforced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday.
Imperial College Professor Neil Ferguson, whose work on the epidemic has informed the government’s policy, has said his research team is “moderately confident” that demand for intensive care beds will peak in two-and-a-half to three weeks’ time if the measures have the desired effect.
The prime minister remains under pressure to further strengthen the lockdown to stop non-essential construction workers heading to building sites, so as not to overwhelm public transport.
NHS staff have complained of being met with packed London Underground services so far this week because so many people are continuing to go to work.
The government is still working to boost the health service’s resources as the UK prepares for a surge in serious coronavirus cases, with 250,000 volunteers being sought to help vulnerable people.
The ExCel Centre in east London is also being converted into a field hospital with 4,000 beds to cope with demand.
Military personnel have been seen at the huge exhibition centre to begin work on transforming it into NHS Nightingale, which was announced by Health Secretary Matt Hancock on Tuesday.