The number of patients who are currently in hospitals across Cornwall and Devon following a positive COVID-19 test has continued to fall.

In Cornwall, the number of patients in hospital has dropped from 17 in the previous week to 13 as of the morning of Tuesday, March 23, while there were 34 patients across Devon in hospital after a positive test, a figure down from the 47 as of the preceding Tuesday. It is also the lowest figure since early October.

In total, there were six in Derriford Hospital in Plymouth (down from 16 as of March 16), 21 patients at the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital (down from 24), six at Torbay Hospital (down from eight), and one at North Devon District Hospital (up from zero).

The figure for the Derriford is the lowest number of patients since October 4, when they had just four patients

And the number of patients in mechanical ventilation beds across the two counties is down as well to six (from 10 in the preceding week), with three in Plymouth and three in Exeter – and there are currently no patients at all in mechanical ventilation beds in Cornwall.

The figures show the number of patients in hospital following a positive COVID-19 test who are currently occupying a bed.

But it should be noted that not every patient would necessarily have been admitted to hospital due to COVID-19, with a number of patients either contracting the virus inside the hospital, or being admitted for unrelated reasons but subsequently testing positive asymptotically when given routine tests.

By RICHARD WHITEHOUSE, Local Democracy Reporter