By Peter Moor
3 new deaths linked to COVID-19 have been announced by the Department of Health.
1 of these deaths have occurred since yesterday.
The Department of Health data shows that 521 people have now died in relation to COVID-19.
BREAKING:— Q Radio News (@qnewsdesk) May 29, 2020
📍3 new COVID-19 related deaths in NI @healthdpt
📍521 deaths linked to the virus here
📍This is lower than 718 deaths linked to COVID-19 from @NISRA who use info from death certificates
📍@healthdpt only records deaths of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 pic.twitter.com/YnNfdYvJvT
This figure is lower than figures released today by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA)
They reported 718 COVID-19 related deaths here.
NISRA figures relate to information entered on death certificates, completed by medical professionals.
They may or may not have previously tested positive for the virus.
Whereas. Department of Health figures are based on mainly hospital patients having previously tested positive for the virus.
Today's Department of Health figures also show that a total of 4,696 people have tested positive for Coronavirus in the region, after a further 17 new cases were confirmed.
📍17 new cases of COVID-19 bringing total cases to 4,696— Q Radio News (@qnewsdesk) May 29, 2020
📍108 care homes have confirmed/suspected outbreaks of COVID-19 2/2 pic.twitter.com/keAHqEs2sx
The data from the Department of Health dashboard also revealed 71 care homes currently have confirmed outbreaks of COVID-19.
37 care homes have suspected outbreaks and 55 have closed outbreaks of the virus.
The figures also provide detail of capacity in Northern Ireland's hospitals.
It revealed that out of Northern Ireland's 98 intensive care unit beds, 7 are occupied by patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19.
Another 59 of the beds are taken up by non COVID-19 related patients, providing 32 spare ICU beds.