80,000 Covid deaths in UK as scientists call for stricter lockdown – BBC News

ten months into the pandemic the uk has passed another grim milestone with the number of people dying within 28 days of a positive covet 19 test now over 80 000. the figure was released to scientists advising the government warned of the need for even stricter lockdown measures than in march because the new variant of the virus is much more infectious as the vaccine continues to be rolled out for vulnerable groups buckingham palace made it publicly known that the queen and prince philip have been vaccinated here's our health correspondent catherine decosta one two three another dark day in this pandemic and still the pressure builds for those on the front line hospitals across the country are treating 50 percent more kobe patients now than during the first peak in april and with 4 000 new admissions today nhs staff say this year's winter pressure is off the charts it really is unprecedented um in terms of the the the numbers of patients that require intensive care uh being put on a ventilator at one time and um most hospitals have uh reached not have expanded their intensive care capacity to somewhere in the region of three times their normal capacity some trusts are urgently trying to discharge patients to free up extra beds this hotel in south london is working with king's college hospital providing a stop gap for homeless or vulnerable patients while they wait for emergency housing once more we must all stay home a simple clear message in this new government campaign reinforcing just how critical it is to keep your distance wear a mask wash your hands and ventilate indoor spaces because even with the uk wide lockdowns experts warn the new variant spreads more easily which is likely to make the virus much harder to control the sort of transmission that perhaps we were seeing during lockdowns last year uh that level of transmission will now be 40 or 50 percent higher so we're going to have to work that much harder to achieve the same effect so the race is on to protect the most vulnerable this the home of bristol city football club now one of seven mass covered vaccination centers in england from monday trained volunteers will begin offering immunizations joining hundreds of gp sites and hospital hubs around the country they have been working genuinely day and night and they're working all through weekends as well to make sure that their populations get vaccinated and it's not like flu clinics this has been hugely complex today the queen and the duke of edinburgh both in their 90s received their first doses at windsor castle vaccinations will eventually help to relieve pressure on the health service but with new infections still at record levels hospital admissions and deaths are expected to continue rising for several weeks to come catherine de costa bbc news well let's look now at the latest government figures in detail there were 59 937 new coronavirus cases recorded in the latest 24-hour period the average number of new cases reported per day in the last week is now 59 660 there were on average 29 630 covert 19 patients in hospital in the last week and there were 1035 deaths that's people who died within 28 days of a positive covid19 test it means on average in the past week 894 deaths were announced every day and it takes the total number of deaths so far across the uk to 80 868.

Under the national lockdown people in england must stay at home and only go out for essential reasons and there are similar measures in place across most of scotland in wales and in northern ireland but the guidance in england has come under scrutiny as derbyshire police said they would review their decision to issue 200-pound fines to two women who drove five miles for a walk john donason reports the pandemic may be yet to peak but on a beautiful winter's day london's parks were busy a stroll and a coffee as good as entertainment gets for many in these challenging times but is the government's message to stay home being heard it does feel very different to the first lockdown where everything was sort of closed and quiet so i think in general it feels the vibe is different i think people are kind of a little bit over it now i don't know that's what that's what i feel like as in i get the vibe that it's it's less restrictive i'm happy with the rules that and i know it's for the better for the good of the population i'm not sure what more they could restrict from people's lives realistically but are even tougher restrictions needed some scientists say the vast majority of people are actually sticking to the rules the problem they say is that the lockdown is still two lakhs in particular too many people they say are categorized as critical workers meaning schools and public transport are still busy in snowdonia hikers have been turned away after the authorities closed the car parks uk government sources say there will be more focus on getting the police to enforce existing lockdown restrictions but some scientists including those advising the government say it's the wrong approach they're not providing the kind of support that's needed for people to feel that they're able to do the sorts of things that the government is now saying we're going to punish you if you don't do it so they've got it all the wrong way around it's really much much more about support and in a long winter with things almost certain to get worse before they get better people may well need it john donason bbc news political correspondent ian watson is here with me and ian downing street is going to try to reinforce this stay-at-home message isn't it in the coming days it is because the prime minister certainly thinks that recently that the situation is more serious more stark than it was in the spring during the first lockdown and we've just heard of course more than 80 000 people have died but also actually the number of people who've had a positive covert test has now exceeded three million since the pandemic begun now basically dentistry isn't looking to impose more restrictions despite what some scientists are calling for but they are worried about compliance so yes we are going to go with public campaigns reinforcing the state home message but there is also going to be a tougher line on enforcement and tonight the home secretary pretty patel said the police will not hesitate to act against rule breakers i'm told what she's actually looking for them to do is to move much more quickly from engaging with the public from explaining to actually issuing fines issuing penalties would have been no new powers for the police they wouldn't be allowed to for example enter people's homes and there is still some confusion over exactly what you can and can't do so for example government guidance would say that you can travel a short distance if necessary for exercise but this is not written into law there's no precise definition in law and some rank and file police officers today have been calling for far more clarity okay ian many thanks our political correspondent ian watson there

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