Coronavirus patients on ventilators drops below 100 for first time since lockdown, stats show
THE number of coronavirus patients on ventilators has dropped below 100 for the first time since the UK went into lockdown, stats show.
At the height of the pandemic in April, more than 3,300 people were on a ventilator in Britain while battling Covid-19, according to NHS figures.
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The number has been slowly declining since, with new cases also falling as the country was urged to stay at home and protect the NHS.
In recent weeks, the Government has gradually eased restrictions while keeping social distancing measures in place.
But with pubs, restaurants and gyms reopened it appears to be a promising sign that those suffering more severely with Covid is still decreasing.
The latest Government statistics show that as of Monday, there were 97 patients on a ventilator in the UK.
Figures also show that at the peak of the crisis, there were more than 20,00 people in hospital with Covid-19.
That number has also dropped to 1,286 patients currently in hospital fighting the virus, as of Sunday.
In April, the Government ordered 15,000 new ventilators – after the first mass production model was approved by regulators.
Boris Johnson had called on British industry to rapidly design and produce new machines that help Covid-19 patients to breathe.
Health secretary Matt Hancock also said ministers wanted to increase ventilator stocks from around 10,000 to 18,000.
It followed concerns that the country did not have enough to meet an expected surge in critically ill patients.
Coronavirus has now claimed the lives of at least 45,878 people in the UK, while more than 300,000 people have tested positive.
Although the number of current cases is relatively low, rises were recorded each day last week for the first time since the peak of the virus in April.
The seven-day average stands at almost 700 – 28 per cent up on three weeks ago.
Second wave fears
It comes amid fears of a second wave – after countries in Europe have reported a surge in Covid cases.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is said to be "extremely concerned" by new outbreaks "bubbling up", both at home and abroad.
However, today experts warned Boris not to risk the UK's economic recovery and lock down the country again.
Businesses are only just starting to get going again after being shut down for months – and many are reporting huge losses for the first half of the year.
Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease specialist at the University of East Anglia, said this morning: "Give us a couple of weeks before we start panicking."
He said it was possible that "we could last out August" without new lockdown measures coming into place.
However, the Government has stressed it doesn't want to put in place another national lockdown.
Instead it will focus on mini-lockdown measures and localised measures.
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