The UK now has the highest death toll in Europe from coronavirus after new official figures revealed that more than 32,000 people have died from the virus.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said 29,648 deaths had taken place by 27 April in England and Wales with Covid-19 mentioned in death certificates. With the addition of deaths in Scotland and Northern Ireland, this takes the UK’s death toll to 32,313, according to calculations by Reuters.
This figure far exceeds the death toll of 29,029 in Italy – until now Europe’s worst-hit country. Italy’s total does not include suspected cases.
Ministers and experts have warned against international comparisons, saying the figure for excess mortality – the number of deaths from all causes that exceed the average for the time of year – is a more meaningful gauge.