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UK turns to emergency morgues amid hospital saturation

Several hospitals in the United Kingdom have had to resort to makeshift morgues for emergencies due to the lack of capacity in health centers due to the increase in deaths from the pandemic.

The University Hospital of Norfolk and Norwich (east of England) confirmed this Thursday that it will use a mortuary enabled last March, although it was not used then, in a former hangar of the RAF Coltishall military air base.

Norfolk Covid-19 Strategic Coordination Group Chairman Tom McCabe said “This temporary morgue provides additional capacity to ensure county hospitals have the flexibility to manage their space.”

McCabe assured that in the makeshift funeral home there are personnel with adequate training “to watch over the deceased” and care for their families, and was blessed by the Bishop of Norwich last April.

In the English county of Surrey, on the outskirts of London, hospitals are turning to a makeshift morgue at Headley Court in Leatherhead, where the bodies of 170 people are currently deposited, more than half of whom died of covid. , reported local authorities.

A spokesperson for the Surrey Local Resilience Forum noted that hospitals in the area have space to store 600 bodies, but are now overcrowded, and the makeshift mortuary can hold 800.

The source warned that Surrey “would be in serious difficulties if the total capacity of 1,400 is exceeded in the coming weeks,” given the increase in infections in the country.

The United Kingdom yesterday reached a new record of deaths from covid in a single day, with 1,564, up to a total of 84,767 according to data from the Ministry of Health, although other official statistics indicate that the real number of deaths attributable to the virus amounts to 97,000.

In a 24-hour period, 47,425 new infections were detected in British territory, about 2,000 more than on Tuesday, although below the record of 68,053 infections that were reported on January 8.

Some UK pharmacies join the national vaccination program against the disease from Thursday, in order to meet the Conservative Government’s goal of immunizing the four most vulnerable groups of citizens, some 15 million people, by mid-February. .

jm / vg / ah

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