England, Scotland and Wales have announced 757 more deaths from the coronavirus today, taking Britain’s total to 18,094.
But the coronavirus outbreak in the UK may have killed more than 41,000 people already when non-hospital deaths are included.
Office for National Statistics (ONS) data, which includes victims who have died at home or in nursing homes, puts the total death count significantly higher than the day-by-day hospital tallies released by the NHS and Department of Health.
But the drawback of the ONS statistics, which only come out once per week, is that they’re 10 days out of date by the time they get published.
On the other hand, the government’s chief scientific adviser has admitted that coronavirus testing should have been ramped up more quickly in the UK.
Sir Patrick Vallance said Public Health England’s testing of suspected COVID-19 cases had started well but had then failed to increase scale “as fast as it needs to scale”.