UK coronavirus hospital death toll rises to 14,576

Latest government figures show 847 more patients have died

Coronavirus in numbers

A total of 14,576 people have now died in hospital after testing positive for coronavirus in the UK.

The latest Department of Health and Social Care figures show 847 more people had died as of 5pm on Thursday compared to the previous day.

So far, 341,551 people have been tested for Covid-19, including 108,692 people who have tested positive.

The figures do not include the number of infections in care homes, which Number 10 said stood at 2,987 as of Tuesday.

A leading physician has warned Britain will face “further waves” of Covid-19 and will probably have the highest death rate in Europe because the government was “too slow” to act.

Professor Anthony Costello, of University College London’s Institute for Global Health, told a committee of MPs on Friday that the “harsh reality” is the UK has been “too slow with a number of things” and deaths could reach to 40,000.

He said: “If we’re going to suppress the chain of transmission of this virus in the next stage we all hope that the national lockdown and social distancing will bring about a large suppression of the epidemic so far – but we’re going to face further waves.

“We need to make sure that we have a system in place that cannot just do a certain number of tests in the laboratory, but has a system at district and community level.”

Prof Costello, giving evidence to the Commons Health and Social Care Committee, said we “should not have any blame at this stage” but that “we can make sure in the second wave we’re not too slow”.

Health secretary Matt Hancock announced testing will be expanded to those in the police, fire service and prisons, as well as critical local authority workers, the judiciary and Department for Work and Pensions staff where required.

It follows criticism of a gulf between those being tested and the testing capacity, with just 18,665 tests being conducted in the 24 hours up to 9am on Thursday, despite 38,000 tests being available.

Mr Hancock confirmed to the committee that more than 50,000 NHS workers have now been tested for coronavirus, and admitted he would "love to be able to wave a magic wand" to increase supplies of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Additional reporting by Press Association

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