Coronavirus: Wrexham has highest weekly number of deaths

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Entrance to Wrexham Maelor Hospital
Image caption,
There have been nine hospital deaths in Wrexham in the most recent week

There were more deaths registered involving coronavirus in Wrexham than any other area of Wales or England, for the second week running, Office for National Statistics figures show.

There have been 24 Covid-19 deaths registered in Wales in the week ending 7 August - nine were hospital deaths in Wrexham.

This means a rise in deaths from the 10 registered the previous week.

Altogether 16 deaths were in the Betsi Cadwaladr health board area.

The ONS figures show deaths in hospitals, care homes and people's homes, and where coronavirus is suspected by a doctor or confirmed.

Deaths involving coronavirus. Numbers registered weekly, by health board.  .

Although there were 16 deaths in north Wales - 15 in hospitals - this is far fewer than at the height of the pandemic in April.

But there are more involving the virus being registered than in other health board areas in Wales at the moment.

Separate daily figures from Public Health Wales - which deal only with confirmed cases of coronavirus - have been showing most deaths over the last fortnight have been in north Wales hospitals.

In July, there was a spike in infections in Wrexham and in cases caught at the town's Maelor hospital, with health officials also offering community testing at mobile units for a period.

The rate of positive cases in the area has eased off in the last week or so and the number of hospital infections also appears to have dropped in recent weeks.

Very low numbers of deaths or no deaths at all involving the virus are now being registered when broken down by council areas, the ONS figures show.

Below Wrexham, for the same week there were five deaths in Tameside, Greater Manchester, four deaths in both Denbighshire and Kirklees in West Yorkshire.

Three deaths were registered in Flintshire, alongside Allerdale in Cumbria, Bradford, Mansfield in Nottinghamshire and Medway in Kent.

There were no deaths at all involving the virus in 15 Welsh council areas at all.

Speaking at the Welsh Government's weekly news conference, Health Minister Vaughan Gething said the number of infections in Wrexham was falling and that there was a "continuing and improved picture".

"The evidence shows there has not been widespread community transmission within Wrexham," Mr Gething said.

"That's really important - that shows that our system is working as it should do: identifying clusters, taking proactive action.

"And we'll need to see more of that as we see different cases and clusters around the rest of the country."

Deaths during the pandemic in Wales. All causes and those involving Covid-19 by week.  The difference between 2020 and average shows so-called 'excess' deaths. Registered up to week ending 7 August.

In Wales, the number of so-called excess deaths is again below what we normally see at this time of year. There were 563 deaths from all causes, which is eight fewer than the five-year average. This is seen as a useful tool in looking at how coronavirus is progressing.

The total number of Covid-19 deaths in Wales up to 7 August was 2,544 - for deaths to be included in these figures, they must have been registered by 15 August.

The weekly ONS figures also show there were six deaths in care homes.

Separate figures published by Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) show Covid-19 was confirmed or suspected in 742 deaths of care home residents in the pandemic up to 14 August.

This makes up 19% of all deaths notified to CIW, which is now updating its figures every two weeks.