There have been 120 tragic deaths resulting from COVID-19 in Ayrshire.

The updated figure, released by National Records of Scotland today, shows an increase of 53 since last week's total.

The death rate per 10,000 population has gone from 1.8 to 3.2.

The number shows deaths registered as related to confirmed or suspected coronavirus as marked on the death certificate.

On the coronavirus deaths, the First Minister said: “They are all people who were loved and cherished and who, for the family and friends, are irreplaceable, and we should never, ever forget that.”

There are now 640 confirmed positive coronavirus cases in Ayrshire, an increase of 17 in 24 hours.

There has been a drop of 18 people being treated in NHS Ayrshire and Arran hospitals, now 103 patients, and the number in ICU has decreased from 10 to 8 since yesterday.

Nicola Sturgeon said that 'the signs of progress are there' but warned against any easing on the lockdown and social-distancing measures.

A third of COVID-19 deaths registered across the country were in care homes.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman, MSP for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley, said: "What we are now doing is ensuring that given the level of additional anxiety, that we offer additional support to those staff, many of whom have had a very difficult experience as the residents that they care for, have died. That is hard for them as it would be for anyone else."

384 Scottish care homes have a current outbreak of coronavirus. That means they have at least one resident who has exhibited symptoms of the virus in the last 14 days.

Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald: Scottish Government's coronavirus briefing on April 22.Scottish Government's coronavirus briefing on April 22.

As at April 19, there have been a total of 1,616 deaths registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate.

The overall number of deaths registered last week is higher than the average for previous year.

Around three quarters can be attributed directly to COVID-19, but more than 200 can’t be explained in this way. NRS indicate that more people are dying of cancer, dementia and Alzheimer’s.

Ms Sturgeon said the government is looking into this.

Almost three quarters (74 per cent) of all deaths involving COVID-19 to date were of people aged 75 or over.

Since, March 5, 1,813 people who tested positive have been discharged from hospitals acorss Scotland.

A number of short-term prisoners nearing the end of their time in custody are to be released early, under measures designed to help tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

The plan will help prison and healthcare staff to continue to manage safely all those who remain in their care during the outbreak and follows measures taken across the world including elsewhere in the UK.

Regulations will be laid before Parliament so that release can start from 30 April. The scheme will be limited to those sentenced to 18 months or less and who on 30 April have 90 days or less left to serve.

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “In this exceptional public health emergency, we are taking focused action to protect public safety as well as prisoners, prison staff and the NHS staff and others that work in our prisons."


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