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Two new Covid-19 deaths as concerns are raised over undiagnosed cancer patients

Corona Covid

There have been two new Covid-19 deaths in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health has reported this afternoon (Wednesday).

Tuesday was the first day since March 18 that no deaths have been reported in Northern Ireland, however, that has not been followed up in consecutive days.

The total number of deaths now stands at 516, of which 52 percent are male.

There are currently 97 Covid-19 inpatients at Craigavon Area Hospital.

Meanwhile, cancer charity Macmillan says the UK faces a “ticking time bomb” of undiagnosed and untreated cancer patients, with nearly 2,000 people a week going undiagnosed due to Covid-19 concerns in hospitals and GP surgeries.

Macmillan Cancer Support said the disease risks becoming “the forgotten ‘C'” of the coronavirus pandemic, with evidence of patients having appointments cancelled or postponed, while others awaiting possible diagnosis say they are put off attending hospitals due to concerns about contracting the virus.

It has prompted Upper Bann MLA Jonathan Buckley to call for an urgent recovery plan for the resumption of cancer services in Northern Ireland.

The Upper Bann MLA said: “I have formally written to the NI Executive calling on consideration towards producing an urgent recovery plan for cancer services in Northern Ireland.

“For many, vital cancer treatment has been put on hold as staff and facilities have been redirected to deal with the threat of coronavirus.

“We cannot risk putting treatment on hold, giving way to further reductions to referrals and the development of undiagnosed cancers.

“Northern Ireland has responded positively to the Covid-19 challenge, but we need to apply the same vision and determination in dealing with cancer, and we need to do it now.”

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