Another six Covid-19 deaths in NI

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Northern Ireland has recorded another six coronavirus hospital deaths.

The overall toll has risen to 124.

A total of 76 new Covid-19 cases were confirmed since Sunday, the Public Health Agency said.

Doctors have again expressed concerns about lack of personal protective equipment.

Sinn Fein west Belfast MP Paul Maskey said at least four deaths involved coronavirus at a west Belfast care home, Our Lady’s Care Home in Beechmount.

He said: “There is an urgent need to ramp up testing in the community, particularly in care homes where clusters have been proven to be fatal for residents.

“A lack of testing means the possibility that the true scale of the crisis here is unknown.”

It is understood infection control measures have been put in place at the care home.

Police stepped up their patrols at coastal beauty spots over the weekend and said the majority of people complied with restrictions designed to limit spread of the virus.

More than 100 coronavirus-related fines have been issued in three days in Northern Ireland, the PSNI said.

Officers broke up barbecues and a small number of large house parties, assistant chief constable Alan Todd said.

Some parents were also believed to have left their children to play at friends’ houses.

Mr Todd told the BBC’s Good Morning Ulster programme: “We engage with people, it is only when people won’t take the encouragement we end up having to enforce the matter.”

A total of 107 fines were imposed in three days over the Easter period by police patrols.

House parties involved some dozen or more people, although some were bigger, Mr Todd said.

Doctors have warned of a shortage of PPE
Doctors have warned of a shortage of PPE (Victoria Jones/PA)

Masks and aprons are in particular short supply.

Health officials have said they are confident enough supplies exist for now.

A large order was delivered from Great Britain last week for distribution.

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