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Covid: UK records 11,299 new coronavirus cases as death toll rises by 608

The UK coronavirus death toll has risen by 608 and a further 11,299 people tested positive for the virus in the past 24 hours.

The death toll now stands at 55,838, while a total of 1,538,794 cases have been recorded in the UK since the pandemic began.

The case rate is down from Monday, when 15,450 new cases of coronavirus were recorded and is significantly lower than last week, where cases remained above 20,000.

The latest rise comes as it was announced up to three households will be able to meet for up to five days over Christmas, after leaders of the devolved nations agreed to relax coronavirus restrictions over the festive period.

Separate figures published by the UK’s statistics agencies for deaths where Covid-19 has been mentioned on the death certificate, together with additional data on deaths that have occurred in recent days, show there have now been more than 71,000 deaths involving Covid-19 in the UK.

England

A further 353 people who tested positive for coronavirus have died in hospital in England, bringing the total number of confirmed deaths reported in hospitals to 38,865, NHS England said on Tuesday.

Patients were aged between 10 and 100. All except nine, aged between 31 and 90, had known underlying health conditions.

The deaths were between October 24 and November 23, with the majority on or after November 21.

Fourteen other deaths were reported with no positive Covid-19 test result.

Wales

There have been a further 595 cases of coronavirus in Wales, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 73,828.

Public Health Wales reported another 21 deaths, taking the total in Wales since the start of the pandemic to 2,406.

Scotland

The number of people who tested positive for coronavirus has risen by 771 to 90,081.

While 41 more people who tested positive have died bringing the total to 3,544.

Northern Ireland

In Northern Ireland a further 79 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in the past 24 hours and an additional 11 deaths were recorded.