UK Passes over 20,000 Deaths Of Covid-19

The UK’s coronavirus death toll has passed 20,000 after a further 781 fatalities were recorded in the past 24 hours. The grim milestone was reached after England recorded another 711 new deaths, Scotland 47 and Wales 23. It means at least 20,287 people have now died in UK hospitals – the fifth highest death toll after the US, Italy, Spain and France. However, it is estimated the figure could be around 40% higher when deaths from care homes, hospices and other settings are taken into account.

Today’s bleak news means the government is likely to face further criticism over its slow response to the virus. The UK imposed lockdown over a week after many of its European neighbours, which some have blamed on the country having the fifth highest death toll world wide. For all the latest news and updates on Coronavirus, click here.For our Coronavirus live blog click here Today it emerged that the government was warned a year ago that a virual flu pandemic would be catastrophic for the country’s health system.

A leaked cabinet briefing urged officials to begin stockpiling PPE and draw up plans for disease surveillance and contact tracing to better prepare the health system for a coronavirus-style outbreak. Officials believe the UK has now reached the peak of the outbreak, but the daily death toll is likely to remain high for sometime. Figures are expected to plateau for a few weeks before declining. When they do decline, this will be at a much slower rate than when they began to accelerate. Police may be given tighter powers to impose lockdown amid fears more people will break rules in the sunny weather (Picture: W8 MEDIA / BACKGRID) A consistent and significant daily drop in deaths is one of five criteria the government has said must be reached before they can consider lifting lockdown.

Home Secretary Priti Patel is expected to be quizzed on this later when she holds the daily press briefing. It is understood she has not ruled out giving police extra powers to enforce stay at home rules, as pictures show people have continued to ignore social distancing during the warm weather.

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