First Covid-linked death of child under 15 recorded in North

Nisra reports 18 further deaths connected to coronavirus in week ending July 30th

Of those who tested positive for Covid-19 in Northern Ireland over the last week, the vast majority are in younger age groups. Photograph: iStock

The first death of a child aged under 15 linked to Covid-19 has been recorded in Northern Ireland.

There have been more than 3,000 deaths related to the virus since the start of the pandemic, according to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (Nisra).

The figures are significantly higher than those from Stormont’s Department of Health, which puts the region’s death toll at 2,189.

The department records a Covid death on the basis of the deceased having tested positive for coronavirus. Nisra’s tally is based on Covid-19 being recorded on the death certificate, regardless of whether there had been a positive test or not.


Four more deaths linked to Covid 19 were reported by the department on Friday as well as a further 1,434 cases of the disease.

A total of 226 patients being treated in the North’s hospital have confirmed Covid-19, including 37 people in intensive care.

In its latest figures, Nisra said there had been 18 registered deaths mentioning Covid-19 on the death certificate in the week to July 30th, accounting for 6 per cent of all deaths in the North that week.

It is the largest weekly Covid-related death toll since mid-April.

According to its analysis, there have been a total of 3,015 deaths linked to the virus since the outbreak began.

Just over three quarters (76 per cent) of all Covid-linked deaths were among those aged 75 years and over.

“However, the latest week’s registration figures include the first Covid-19 related death in Northern Ireland within the under-15 age group,” Nisra said in a statement on Friday.

Since the start of the pandemic there have been 27 Covid-linked deaths in the 15-44 age bracket, 262 among those aged 45-64 years and 436 involving people aged between 65 and 74 years.

Men accounted for 51 per cent of virus-related deaths, and women 49 per cent.

The Antrim and Newtownabbey, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon and Mid-Ulster local council districts all had a higher proportion of Covid-related deaths when compared to the overall death rate in each area.

Nisra said there were 19 registered deaths linked to the virus in the week ending July 30th, an increase of seven on the previous week.

About two thirds (66 per cent) of Covid-related deaths occurred in hospitals, just over a quarter(26 per cent) in care homes, 0.5 per cent in hospices and 7 per cent at residential addresses or another location.

On Friday, mass vaccination centres in the North opened their doors to 16- and 17-year-olds for first shots.

The walk-in service is offering the teenagers the Pfizer vaccine, following a recommendation from the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

Bookings for an appointment can also be made online.

Earlier this week, the North's Minister for Health Robin Swann said it was decided to open up vaccinations to 16- and 17-year-olds on the basis that the JCVI is an independent, expert committee which has "consistently held that the main focus of its decision should be the benefit to children and young people themselves, weighed against any potential harms from vaccination to children and young people."