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 504 people have now died as a result of COVID-19.
BREAKING:— Q Radio News (@qnewsdesk) May 22, 2020
📍3 new COVID-19 related deaths in NI @healthdpt
📍504 have now died from the virus
📍This is lower than 664 deaths linked to COVID-19 from @NISRA who use info from the death certificate
📍@healthdpt only records deaths of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 pic.twitter.com/HLP1X51MkV
This figure is lower than figures released today by the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA)
They reported 689 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 4,504 people have tested positive for Coronavirus in the region, after a further 23 new cases were confirmed.
📍23 new cases of COVID-19 bringing total cases to 4,481— Q Radio News (@qnewsdesk) May 22, 2020
📍108 care homes have confirmed/suspected outbreaks of COVID-19 2/2 pic.twitter.com/9ssOADOoIQ
The data from the Department of Health dashboard also revealed 72 care homes currently have confirmed outbreaks of COVID-19.
36 care homes have suspected outbreaks and 36 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 101 intensive care unit beds, 13 are occupied by patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19.
Another 64 of the beds are taken up by non COVID-19 related patients, providing 24 spare ICU beds.