Coronavirus: 888 more people in UK die, bringing total number to 15,464

A total of 15,464 patients have died in hospital after testing positive for coronavirus in the UK as of 5pm on Friday, the Department of Health said, up by 888 from 14,576 the day before.

The Department of Health said, as of 9am on Saturday, 357,023 people have been tested of which 114,217 tested positive.

A total of 893 people who tested positive for coronavirus in Scotland have died, a rise of 56 on Friday's figure, according to the Scottish Government.

Public Health Wales has announced 28 new deaths of people who tested positive for Covid-19, bringing the total number of confirmed fatalities in Wales to 534.

A further 17 people in Northern Ireland have died in hospital settings with coronavirus in the past day, the Public Health Agency said.

This brings the total number of confirmed deaths in hospital settings in the region to 193.

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Pictures of the week: April 12 - 18
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Pictures of the week: April 12 - 18
A stall holder in a protective face mask in Brixton Market in South London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The government's message: 'Stay Home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives' is shown in lights on the rotating display near the top of the BT Tower in the Fitzrovia area of London as the UK continues in lockdown to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
The scene in Cleethorpes as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Visitors to Greenwich Park in south east London take their daily exercise and photograph the cherry blossom in the Royal Park as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday April 16, 2020. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire
A woman in a protective face mask walks through Brixton Market in South London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A woman walks past NHS tributes which are painted on pillow cases attached to the fence at Elder Park in Glasgow as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A woman runs alone on Worthing beach in front of Worthing Pier to get her daily exercise and obey social distancing instructions as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A person walks past a boarded up Debenhams, Oxford Street, London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A large display thanking the NHS at Wandsworth roundabout as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A temporary morgue on Wanstead Flats in East London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A man plays football in front of graffiti reading Stop 5G Paranoia on Wanstead Flats in East London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A view along Oxford Street, London, looking from Oxford Circus towards Centrepoint, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Head falconer Chris O'Donnell with a White-tailed Sea Eagle at Warwick Castle, Warwick, home to the UK's biggest birds of prey show. The castle's birds are unable to give their regular displays as the UK continues in lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
A Virgin Atlantic charter flight lands at Heathrow Airport, London, delivering vital medical supplies to UK from Shanghai. Itis one of eight cargo-only flights, in partnership with the Department of Health and the NHS, that Virgin Atlantic is operating during April.
Mounted police officers speak to people on Primrose Hill, London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A Virgin Atlantic charter flight lands at Heathrow Airport, London, delivering vital medical supplies to UK from Shanghai. Itis one of eight cargo-only flights, in partnership with the Department of Health and the NHS, that Virgin Atlantic is operating during April.
Hand painted pictures of colourful rainbows are displayed on the door of a home in South London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
People wearing protective masks whilst shopping in South London as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Colourful signs in a shop window say 'stay home', 'protect the NHS' and 'save lives' as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A man walks past a 'we are closed' sign at Crabshack in Worthing as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Bobby (no surname given) feeding a peanut to a squirrel in St James's Park, London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A boy on his BMX rides up a ramp as he gets his daily exercise in a skatepark while the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Police monitor people on the Long Walk in Windsor, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Two people practice social distancing while talking to each other sitting on benches in Clevedon on Easter Bank Holiday Monday at midday, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A deserted M5 motorway near Clevedon on Easter Bank Holiday Monday at midday, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
EDITORS NOTE: NUMBER PLATES PIXELATED BY PA PICTURE DESK Picture taken at 08:50 at a drive-in Covid-19 testing centre at Leeds Temple Green Park and Ride, part of the Government's UK-wide drive to increase testing for thousands more NHS workers.
Members of the public in the Meadows in Edinburgh as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Cones and beach detritus block the entrance to a car parking section of beach around midday on Easter Sunday at Weston-super-Mare as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.
A woman prays at the closed doors of Westminster Cathedral ahead of the Easter morning mass, London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. Churches across the country have been continuing to broadcast services digitally in the lead-up to Easter, with more than 1,000 livestreams taking place on a regular basis.
A woman prays at the closed doors of Westminster Cathedral ahead of the Easter morning mass, London, as the UK continues in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus. Churches across the country have been continuing to broadcast services digitally in the lead-up to Easter, with more than 1,000 livestreams taking place on a regular basis.
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In other news, doctors and health workers criticised the British government on Saturday for suggesting that personal protective equipment (PPE) worn while treating coronavirus patients could be re-used, as supplies run low across the country.

Britain is at or near the peak of a health crisis in which more than 15,000 people have died - the fifth highest national death toll of a pandemic linked to at least 150,000 deaths worldwide.

Data published on Saturday showed 15,464 people have died in British hospitals after testing positive for coronavirus - an increase of 888 in the 24 hours to 1600 GMT on Friday. That increase is higher than recent days, but below the highest daily death toll of 980, seen just over a week ago.

The government issued new guidance to hospitals on Friday setting out that alternatives to fluid-repellent full length gowns may need to be used, including reusable gowns or even long sleeved laboratory coats.

"This guidance is a further admission of the dire situation that some doctors and healthcare workers continue to find themselves in because of government failings," said Rob Harwood, chairman of the consultants committee at the British Medical Association.

"If it's being proposed that staff reuse equipment, this must be demonstrably driven by science and the best evidence – rather than availability."

A Department of Health spokesman said the guidance was to ensure that staff knew what to do to minimise risk if shortages did occur. They said the new rules remained in line with international standards.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock told a committee of lawmakers on Friday that Britain was "tight on gowns" but had 55,000 more arriving and was aiming to get the right equipment where it was needed by the end of this weekend.

The trade union Unite said it had told its members they could lawfully refuse to work to avoid risk of injury, describing the situation over PPE as a "national scandal".

The Royal College of Nursing said it had written "in the strongest terms" to express its concerns over the rules change, and said they had not been consulted about them.

NHS Providers, a body which represents hospitals and other parts of Britain's publicly funded National Health Service, said supply levels of gowns were critical.

"It is now clear that some trusts will run out of fully fluid repellent gowns this weekend," deputy chief executive Saffron Cordery said.

Britain's response to the coronavirus outbreak - which has lagged that of European peers - is a source of increasing political criticism for Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is recovering from a spell in intensive care after becoming infected.

The crisis has seen citizens ordered to stay at home and businesses forced to shut during four weeks of restrictions on daily life without precedent in British peacetime history. The lockdown was extended on Thursday for at least three more weeks.

Queen Elizabeth effectively cancelled plans to publicly celebrate her 94th birthday on Tuesday, silencing a traditional ceremonial gun salute because she thought it would not be fitting in the current circumstances.

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