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UK Coronavirus Death Toll Passes 20,000

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UK Coronavirus Death Toll Passes 20,000

More than 20,000 people have died after testing positive coronavirus in the UK, according to the latest recorded figures.

As of 5pm yesterday (24 April), a further 813 deaths have been recorded in hospitals, bringing the total number of Covid-19 related fatalities to 20,319.

The new data, which was released today by the department of health and social care, also gives the official number of confirmed cases in Great Britain as 148,377.

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The UK is only the 5th country in the world to go past the 20,000 mark, with only the USA, Italy, Spain and France passing it so far.

Yesterday (24 April), photos were released that showed the first volunteers who were injected with the coronavirus vaccine in the UK's human trials.

Researchers gave the first dose yesterday (23 April) to one of the volunteers, while the other person was given a meningitis vaccine so that the two could be compared. Only the doctors will know which patient was administered with the Covid-19 vaccine.

The Oxford Vaccine Group plans to repeat the process with six more participants today (25 April).

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The first two volunteers were microbiologist Elisa Granato and cancer researcher Edward O'Neill, who both said they wanted to assist in what could be a groundbreaking development.

Cancer researcher Edward O'Neill was one of the first to be injected. Credit: BBC
Cancer researcher Edward O'Neill was one of the first to be injected. Credit: BBC

Sarah Gilbert, who is professor of vaccinology at the Jenner Institute and led the pre-clinical research, saying she is '80 percent confident' the vaccine will work.

She said: "Personally I have a high degree of confidence in this vaccine.

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"Of course, we have to test it and get data from humans. We have to demonstrate it actually works and stops people getting infected with coronavirus before using the vaccine in the wider population."

Professor Andrew Pollard, director of the Oxford Vaccine Group - which is leading the trial - said: "We're chasing the end of this current epidemic wave.

"If we don't catch that, we won't be able to tell whether the vaccine works in the next few months. But we do expect that there will be more cases in the future because this virus hasn't gone away."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: uk news, Coronavirus, Health

Amelia Ward
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