Published On: Mon, Apr 27th, 2020

NHS news: Families of dead NHS staff to receive £60,000 payout | Personal Finance | Finance


Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the measure at the daily Downing Street press briefing on Monday.

Matt Hancock also announced 82 NHS workers and 16 social care staff have died after contracting COVID-19.

Mr Hancock said: “Families of staff who die from coronavirus in the course of their essential frontline work will receive a £60,000 payment.

“Of course, nothing replaces the loss of a loved one but we want to do everything we can to support families who are dealing with this grief.”

He said he felt a “deep personal sense of duty that we must care for their loved ones” as he confirmed the government was setting up a life assurance scheme.

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The Health Secretary also announced that the scheme is being looked at for other front line professions.

Some NHS services that have been paused on from the pandemic will also be reopened from Tuesday.

Urgent services such as cancer care and mental health support will be the priority to restore to normal service.

It has been suggested that the Nightingale Hospitals could be used for those purposes, as they have had few patients admitted.

The announcement comes as another 360 coronavirus deaths in UK hospitals were announced on Monday, representing the lowest daily increase in four weeks.

The Department of Health said a total of 21,092 hospital patients have now died in the UK after testing positive for COVID-19.

It is the smallest daily rise in coronavirus deaths in UK hospitals since 30 March, when 180 deaths were confirmed.

Monday’s figure is also the smallest percentage increase on the previous day to date at 1.7 percent.

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England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, said the country was “definitely not consistently past the peak” of coronavirus deaths.

Speaking at the Downing Street briefing, he said there was still a “very long way to run” as he was asked about the UK’s expected death total.

The government’s chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance had suggested that keeping the death toll below 20,000 would be a good outcome, which has been surpassed in hospitals alone.

Prof Whitty said: “We need to view this epidemic over the long run and this has got a very long way to run.”

Mr Hancock admitted the government has a “lot of work” to do to hit its target to carry out 100,000 coronavirus tests a day from Thursday.

Some 29,058 tests had been carried out in England, Scotland and Wales in the 24 hours up to 9am on Saturday.

The health secretary said the government was “broadly where we expected to be” in terms of testing capacity, saying the UK had gone past the number of tests carried out in South Korea.

The military has also been brought into test essential workers for coronavirus, using mobile units in “hard to reach areas.”



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