Fresh plea from health chiefs after number of coronavirus-related deaths reaches 1,200 in Northamptonshire
Latest figures from NHS England confirms 26 deaths among coronavirus patients in 48 hours in our two main hospitals
Twenty-six Covid-19 patients died in Northamptonshire hospitals over a 48-hour period, the latest figures have revealed, taking the county's total number of known victims to 1,200.
NHS England confirmed 26 out of around 400 Covid-19 patients being treated all died at the county's two main hospitals on Thursday and Friday last week.
That total could still rise even further as analysts allow at least a four or five-day lag in the reporting and registration process.
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The grim news sparked fresh pleas from health chiefs and hospital staff as the number of coronavirus-positive patients requiring urgent treatment continue to put unprecedented pressure on staff and resources.
Northampton General Hospital's ITU clinical lead, Johnny Wilkinson, said today: "The reality is we just have a greater number of cases knocking on the hospital's door."
Figures from the NHS reveal 994 victims at Northampton and Kettering General hospitals since the pandemic began, all within 28 days of a positive test or with Covid-19 mentioned on a death certificate.
A further ten deaths linked to coronavirus in Northamptonshire's care homes within were confirmed by the Office for National Statistics up to last Friday, taking the total to 234 since April.
Numbers of positive tests have fallen across the county since the latest national lockdown began in early-January, raising hopes of an early end to the lockdown restrictions.
But health chiefs have warned rates are not falling fast enough and not enough people are sticking to the rules.
Northamptonshire's Director of Public Health Lucy Wightman said: "We are a long way from being back even to pre-Christmas rates.
"Starting to see chinks of light but there are still a lot of families who are mourning their loss due to virus and that is preventable.
"If people were doing the right things we would be reducing the risk and losing fewer people."
Figures published by NHS England today (Wednesday) showed 20 previously unreported deaths — 14 of them among patients at Northampton General Hospital in the space of five days since Friday.
Six further deaths were recorded at Kettering General Hospital, five of them in a single day on Sunday.