THE official UK coronavirus death toll has today risen by 116 in 24 hours in England as fatalities pass 37,000.
It is one of the smallest increases yet as the UK edges closer to getting out of lockdown after the pandemic hit – however new statistics today revealed the true toll could be much higher.
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The Office for National Statistics today revealed 47,000 people could have been killed by the deadly bug already.
The ONS figures show that 42,173 died from the virus in England and Wales up to May 15.
Combined with the latest ONS stats for Scotland and Northern Ireland, it means a total of 46,383 have died across the UK.
A further 964 hospital patients in England who had tested positive for Covid-19 died between May 16 and May 24 meaning that the overall UK death toll is just above 47,300.
The figure is 10,000 more than the official Department of Health stats.
It comes as
- The government has revealed the full list of retailers that can reopen on June 15
- Barbecues and garden parties could be allowed by the end of June
- Small numbers of children will head back to class when schools reopen from next week
- Terrifying footage reveals how the deadly bug can spread on the Tube
However, the official death toll according to the Government is now at 37,030.
Scotland today recorded 18 more deaths, with the toll in the country reaching 2,291.
Wales reported another eight deaths to bring their total to 1,282. And in Northern Ireland, no news deaths were reported – the first day there has been no new fatalities since March 24.
Britain has been in lockdown for over two months with most shops closed and people living in isolation since March 23.
But the extreme measures have slowly started to ease with barbecues and garden parties for ten person 'bubbles' expected to be allowed from the end of June.
Boris Johnson hailed the move as a step on the road to "rebuilding our country" and urged Brits to "spend" to help the economy to "bounce back".
The new relaxation measures will pave the way for millions of people to head back to work.
But the WHO's Dr Mike Ryan has warned of a second peak of coronavirus.
He said: We may get a second peak in this wave, this happened during pandemics in the past."
And he added the virus numbers could "jump up at any time".
Meanwhile, men with longer ring fingers are at a lower risk of dying from coronavirus, research has found.
Males exposed to more testosterone in the womb tend to grow longer ring fingers.
And the hormone may produce more of a compound called ACE2, which helps the body to fight the virus.
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