Twenty-eight deaths linked to Covid-19 in Northern Ireland have been recorded in the latest weekly update.
The figure represents a slight drop, down from 29 in the previous week, according to data compiled by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (Nisra).
The latest deaths, which happened in the week ending December 10th, take the total number of coronavirus-linked fatalities recorded by Nisra to 3,950.
The Nisra figure is drawn from different data sources and is always higher than the Department of Health’s total, as it provides a broader picture of the impact of Covid-19.
On December 10th, the department had reported 2,921 deaths. In its daily update this afternoon, the department reported a further three Covid-related deaths, as well as 1,887 positive cases.
The department’s statistics focus primarily on hospital deaths and only include people who have tested positive for the virus.
Nisra obtains its data from death certificates on which Covid-19 is recorded as a factor by a medical professional, regardless of where the death took place or whether the patient tested positive.
The statistics agency reports its Covid data with a week lag.
The Nisra figure includes 2,748 deaths in hospital, 864 in care homes, 15 in hospices and 323 at residential addresses or other locations.
Nisra reported that up to December 10th, the deaths of 1,137 care home residents were linked to Covid-19, 29 per cent of all coronavirus-related deaths.
Covid-19 was also mentioned on the death certificate of 39 of the 368 deaths registered in the week to December 10th.
Some of the deaths registered in the week of December 4th to December 10th could have taken place before that week, as deaths can take a number of days to register.
Those aged 75 and over accounted for 73.7 per cent of the 3,937 Covid-related deaths registered between March 19th, 2020, and December 10th, 2021. – PA