Nine more Covid-19 related deaths recorded as vaccine rollout continues

Nine more Covid-19 related deaths recorded as vaccine rollout continues

Nine more Covid-19 deaths have been reported in Northern Ireland according to the latest figures from the Department of Health.

A further 341 more people tested positive for the virus over the last 24 hours.

The Covid-19 related death total is now 2,009, after reaching a milestone figure of 2,000 on Monday.

Meanwhile almost 450,000 doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered.

The total number of deaths has doubled since December, after reaching 1,000 over two months ago.

There are currently 474 Covid inpatients in NI hospitals of which 55 are being treated in intensive care.

There are 64 care home outbreaks.

As Northern Ireland continues to roll out its vaccination programme, it has emerged that nearly a quarter of those people deemed clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) and who are under the age of 65 have received the vaccine so far – more than 18,500 people.

As of Monday 409,507 people had received their first dose, 29,201 of whom had received their second, meaning a total of 438,708 doses had been administered, including:

The exact number of people who fall into the CEV category in Northern Ireland is not clear.

Department of Health figures suggest a total of 95,000 people are classed as extremely vulnerable., but it is not known how many of those would already have been vaccinated because of their age.

Those on the CEV list include:

People who received a shielding letter because they are classed as clinically extremely vulnerable can now book vaccinations over the phone, after an online booking system went live on Friday.

It comes as it was announced that 1.7m extra people in England will be asked to shield, after a new model was developed that takes into account extra factors rather than just health.

These people will not be made a priority for vaccination. The model has been shared with the devolved administrations, including Stormont, with it as yet unclear as to whether they will make any changes.

Northern Ireland’s Executive is set to review current lockdown restrictions – which saw schools and non-essential shops closed on 26 December – on Thursday.

It is thought unlikely restrictions on shops, restaurants and non-essential services will be eased before April, although there have been suggestions some schools may reopen in March.

Officials say with St Patrick’s Day and the Easter holidays around the corner, they do not want to prematurely allow more opportunities for people to mix, which would likely lead to another rise in cases.

BBC News NI is keen to hear your questions about coronavirus following the executive meeting on Thursday to review restrictions.

We’ll answer as many as possible with our reporter Jayne McCormack live at 19:00 on the BBC News NI website, iPlayer and BBC News NI Facebook Page.

If you are reading this page on the BBC News app, you will need to visit the mobile version of the BBC website to submit your question on this topic.

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