Britain’s coronavirus hospital death toll has climbed by 16 to 34,119 in a slight week-on-week increase as all but one death occurred in England.
England reported 15 new deaths on Wednesday and Scotland announced its first coronavirus fatality in more than a month, although it occurred on April 21 and wasn’t reported until now.
No new deaths were reported by Wales and Northern Ireland, where ministers are considering fresh lockdown curbs to halt a spike in cases.
The figures represent the highest rise on a Wednesday in August.
On recent Wednesdays, the death toll increased by 11 on August 12, 15 on August 5, 19 on July 29 and 11 on July 22. The highest total on a Wednesday was 936 on April 8 when the UK was in the peak of its outbreak.
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Deaths have been trending downwards, with some slight increases some days, and the latest data from the Office for National Statistics showed the lowest weekly toll in England and Wales since the lockdown began (152 fatalities in the week up to August 7).
The latest official figures from each UK nation show that Britain’s true death toll has passed 57,000, including suspected cases where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.
NHS England reported 15 new deaths, bringing the total number of deaths in hospitals in England to 29,480.
There are fears a local lockdown could be imposed in Oldham, Greater Manchester, this week due to a rise in confirmed infections.
A lockdown could prove “really catastrophic”, the council leader has warned.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Labour councillor Sean Fielding urged ministers not to impose stricter measures in the Greater Manchester town, even though “raw numbers” are similar to those in Leicester when it was put into local lockdown.
He said: “We’re strongly making the case up here in Oldham that that would not be the right solution for the wave of the pandemic that we’re seeing.”
No new coronavirus deaths have been reported in Scotland in the last 24 hours, but the death total has increased by one to 2,492 due to a previous fatality being included in the figures.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the death was registered on April 21 but not included in original figures due to a delay.
She also said that 4,216 people have died in Scotland with confirmed or suspected coronavirus, according to the National Records of Scotland.
Three of these deaths were in the week up until Sunday.
Speaking during her daily daily briefing, the First Minister said 19,457 people have tested positive for the virus in Scotland, up by 50 from 19,407 the day before.
Some 15 of these new cases are in the Grampian health board area, 10 in Greater Glasgow and Clyde, three in Lanarkshire and 12 in Tayside.
There are 248 people in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19, a decrease of six in 24 hours.
Of these patients, two were in intensive care, down by two.
Ms Sturgeon also announced that Aberdeen is to remain in local lockdown for a third week as it is not yet safe to lift the restrictions.
Pubs and restaurants in the city will stay closed and restrictions on household gatherings and travel will remain in place.
The First Minster said she hopes to be able to lift the restrictions for “lower risk premises”, such as non-licensed cafes, from next Wednesday and a mid-week review will take place on Sunday.
Northern Ireland’s death toll remains at 559 after no fatalities were reported in the previous 24 hours.
The number of confirmed cases increased by 34 to 6,505. Of those, Mid and East Antrim (10) and Belfast (7) had the highest number of infections.
Northern Ireland faces having fresh lockdown rules imposed as soon as Thursday due to a spike in cases, Stormont’s Health Minister Health Minister Robin Swann has warned.
Northern Ireland’s executive is due to meet to consider special measures to curb the spread of the virus.
Public Health Wales also reported no new fatalities.
Its confirmed case total increased to 17,620 after 17 people tested positive for Covid-19.
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