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Top stories this morning 0:00
Health workers are “back in the eye of the storm” as coronavirus cases rise at the end of the “toughest year”, NHS England’s chief executive has said.
Sir Simon Stevens paid tribute to NHS staff in a new year message, saying they had “brilliantly” cared for 200,000 severely ill Covid-19 patients.
He said that by late spring he expected the NHS to have offered vaccinations to all vulnerable people.
That offered “the biggest chink of hope” for 2021, Sir Simon said.
With coronavirus infections at what public health officials called an “unprecedented level” and a new variant spreading, hospitals in England have now surpassed the April peak of Covid-19 patients.
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Health officials in Wales and Scotland have also said they are at risk of becoming overwhelmed.
On Monday, a record 41,385 Covid cases were reported in the UK, though it is thought the infection rate was higher during spring when testing was much more limited.
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It’s Tuesday 29 December 2020. Get the latest news, sport, business and weather from the BBC’s Breakfast team live on iPlayer daily from 6am.
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