UK records more than 1,500 daily Covid deaths for first time in pandemic

Published: 13 January 2021

Post Desk : More than 1,500 coronavirus deaths have been recorded in the past 24 hours, marking the UK’s deadliest day of the pandemic.

According to analysis by the PA news agency, it means that the country’s Covid-19 death toll has now passed 100,000.

A further 47,525 new infections were also reported on Wednesday. In a glimmer of hope, the rate of new cases has dropped by 7.2 per cent compared to the previous week.

But the record daily death toll of 1,564 — more than one person a minute — starkly illustrates the current grim state of the pandemic in the UK.

The previous highest daily toll was on Friday, when 1,325 were reported to have died.
The previous highest daily toll was on Friday, when 1,325 were reported to have died.

According to official Department of Health figures, the UK’s death toll — which only includes who died within 28 days of testing positive — now stands at 84,767.

However, analysis of statistics for people who had Covid-19 recorded on their death certificate, plus deaths known to have occurred more recently, suggests the true death toll is 101,160.

The Prime Minister told MPs: “If you ask me when do we think that the ICU capacity is likely to be overtopped, I can’t give you a prediction for that.

“But all I can say is that the risk is very substantial and we have to keep the pressure off the NHS and the only way to do that is to follow the current lockdown.”

The latest official figures on the coronavirus dashboard show more than 36,000 people are in hospital with coronavirus, including almost 3,500 on ventilation.

Mr Johnson told the Commons Liaison Committee that “the situation is very, very tough indeed in the NHS” and “the strain is colossal” on staff.

The Prime Minister also acknowledged concerns about a new Brazilian variant of coronavirus, although he did not announce a ban on travel from the South American country.

“We already have tough measures… to protect this country from new infections coming in from abroad,” he said.

“We are taking steps to do that in respect of the Brazilian variant.”

Earlier, at Prime Minister’s Questions Mr Johnson said vaccinations would take place 24/7 as soon as possible, although supply of doses remained the main barrier.

He said the process of protecting people from coronavirus is already going “exceptionally fast” but “at the moment the limit is on supply” of the vaccine.

“We will be going to 24/7 as soon as we can,” he told MPs.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock will set out further details “in due course”, Mr Johnson said.