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Coronavirus Northern Ireland: Four further deaths and 263 new cases confirmed

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Coronavirus testing. (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Coronavirus testing. (Andrew Milligan/PA)

PA

Coronavirus testing. (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Four new deaths linked to coronavirus have been reported in Northern Ireland in the last 24 hours, the Department of Health has said.

This brings the total deaths in Northern Ireland to 2,033 as of 10am on Sunday.

A further 263 positive cases of the virus have been reported, meaning there have been 110,979 positive cases confirmed in Northern Ireland since the start of the pandemic.

This includes 2,140 positive cases in the last seven days which shows a slight increase of 3 compared to the previous week.

Coronavirus Data Graphs

In Northern Ireland hospitals there are now 335 Covid-19 patients, including 135 patients in intensive care.

A total of 78 patients are on ventilators, including 40 with Covid-19.

Hospital occupancy is currently at 93% and there 47 active outbreaks of the virus in Northern Ireland care homes.

Meanwhile, Boris Johnson is expected to set out a "cautious" plan to relax coronavirus restrictions despite a new target to vaccinate all adults by the end of July.

The Prime Minister is expected to outline his blueprint for easing lockdown in England to parliament on Monday, with competing warnings from scientists urging a gradual approach and some Tory MPs backing lifting all restrictions by the end of May.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said he understood the strong urge to return to normal life following the success of the vaccine rollout so far, but said the Government's aim was to take a "cautious but irreversible approach".

Mr Hancock said it was likely there would be weeks between each relaxing of the rules to allow ministers to take an informed approach.

He added that one in three adults in the UK had now received a vaccine and that the Government is confident it has the supplies to meet the July 31 target and to vaccinate all adults over 50 and higher risk groups by April 15.

Speaking on Sky's Sophy Ridge, he said: “The vaccination programme, whilst clearly going very well, will take time to be able to reach all people who have significant vulnerability, especially because we need to get the second jab to everybody.

“We’ve got time that needs to be taken to get this right. The Prime Minister will set out the road map tomorrow and he will set out the full details - taking into account that we need to take a cautious but irreversible approach, that’s the goal.”

Belfast Telegraph


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