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Covid-19: Four deaths as positive cases rise sharply but hospital numbers drop

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There have been four further Covid-related deaths reported in Northern Ireland today (Wednesday).

The total number of deaths now stands at 2,879.

The ABC Borough accounts for 393 – up one – fatalities. There have been 212 in the NMD district, while Mid Ulster accounts for 273 – also up one on yesterday.

There have been a further 1,992 positive cases recorded from 5,772 people tested in the last 24 hours, according to the Department of Health’s latest daily dashboard update. There have been 11,517 in the last seven days.

There were 191 positive cases in Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon. There were 236 cases in Newry, Mourne and Down – the second highest in NI – while Mid-Ulster recorded 157. Belfast – the highest in NI – recorded 372 positive cases.

There are 332 – down nine – patients in hospitals across Northern Ireland as a result of the virus, 30 – up one – of whom are in intensive care units. A total of 240 Covid patients have been discharged in the last seven days.

Currently, there are 110 – down three – Covid patients in the Southern Trust area, 59 – down four – of whom are in Craigavon Area Hospital.

There are 12 ICU beds available across Northern Ireland.

Hospital occupancy in Northern Ireland currently stands at 104% – up 1% on yesterday.

Meanwhile, a case of the new Omicron Covid-19 variant has been confirmed in the Republic of Ireland.

It is believed to be linked to an individual who travelled from southern Africa.

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer in Ireland, said the situation was being monitored.

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