Shropshire coronavirus hospital death toll rises to 131
Another patient has died with coronavirus in Shropshire, taking the county's death toll in hospitals to 131.
NHS England has confirmed that the patient died in the care of Shrewsbury & Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH).
It means at least 208 people have now died with coronavirus in Shropshire, with 77 deaths confirmed in county care homes.
Of the 131 to die with Covid-19 in hospital, 119 have died at SaTH, seven at Shropshire Community Health Trust and five at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital, near Oswestry.
Meanwhile 45 people have died in care homes in the Shropshire Council area and 32 have died in the Telford & Wrekin area. The care home figures only cover April 10 to May 8 so the full toll is likely to be higher.
A further nine deaths were reported in Wales on Friday, taking the country's death toll to 1,173, with 12 of these dying in Powys.
However, the Office for National Statistics has reported that 65 people have died in Powys with suspected coronavirus.
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Across England, there have been a further 186 deaths of patients with coronavirus in hospital, bringing the total to 24,345.
Those to die most recently were aged between 15 and 99.
And the official UK death toll, which includes deaths across the community and care homes, has risen by 384 to 33,998 although the true death toll is thought to be far higher.
A statement released by SaTH today said: "Our thoughts and condolences are with the families and friends of those patients at this very difficult and distressing time."
Meanwhile the Government’s approach to coronavirus testing has been labelled a “shambles” as it emerged that just 1,500 contact tracers out of a promised 18,000 had been appointed by the start of the week.
Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis said while “about 15,000” applications have been received, only 1,500 people have currently been hired for the programme which is seen as key to allowing the UK to lift the most stringent lockdown measures.
Ministers hope contact tracing will reduce transmission by identifying and alerting people who may have been exposed to the virus, so that they can protect themselves and others around them by self-isolating.
But as the Government’s mid-May deadline for the recruitment of 18,000 contact tracers passed, shadow cabinet office minister Rachel Reeves called the approach so far “a shambles”.