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Britain reports nearly 20,000 deaths from virus

LONDON — The British government says 684 more people with the coronavirus have died in UK hospitals, increasing the total reported to 19,506.

That’s higher than 616 deaths in the previous 24-hour period. There has been increasing scrutiny of the UK figures for understating the actual number of coronavirus-related deaths because they don’t include deaths in care homes or elsewhere in the community.

The UK’s death toll is the fourth highest in Europe, behind Italy, Spain and France, all of whom have reported more than 20,000 deaths.

The government also says the number of daily tests increased by around 5,000 to 28,532.

Earlier today, an online link to an expanded testing program for essential workers stopped accepting applications after a few hours because of “significant demand.”

— AP

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