THE increasing number of coronavirus patients being cared for at Warrington Hospital is becoming ‘extremely concerning’.

This is the view of Professor Simon Constable, chief executive of Warrington and Halton Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, following the news that the number of patients being cared for after contracting Covid-19 is greater than that at the peak of the first wave in April.

As of today, Thursday, there are currently 145 inpatients at the hospital who have tested positive for the virus, with 17 in intensive care.

The highest number of Covid-19-positive inpatients during the first wave was 124 on April 12. At that time, 18 of these were in ICU.

What is also worrying is the fact that 20 Covid-positive patients have died at the hospital in the space of a week.

To date, the trust’s death toll stands at 188, including three further deaths which occurred in the past 24 hours.

In a statement, Professor Constable said: “The situation at Warrington Hospital remains extremely concerning, with the number of Covid-positive inpatients now exceeding that seen during the first peak of the pandemic in April 2020.

“Our priority remains the safe and effective care of all of our patients, as well as the health and wellbeing of our staff. 

“We are continuing to carry out diagnostic procedures and treatments for our cancer and urgent patients, as well as maintaining as much of our planned surgery and outpatient programme as possible.”

Operationally, Warrington Hospital is currently caring for 100 patients with a length of stay of more than 21 days. The national target is 90.

Accident and emergency visits are also on the rise, with 1,373 people visiting the department in the past seven days as opposed to 1,329 in the previous week.