By Roderick McMurray
THERE'S been an increase in coronavirus infection rates in Mid-Ulster, according to figures released by the Department of Health yesterday (Monday).
Meawhile, nine more people have died in Mid-Ulster over the last week after contracting coronavirus.
Over the last seven days (November 30-December 6) there were 325 positive cases of coronavirus recorded in Mid-Ulster, giving a rate of 220.3 per 100k of the population, the second highest rate of all 11 council areas in Northern Ireland, behind Mid and East Antrim (246 per 100k).
Mid-Ulster's figure was up on the previous seven-day period (November 23-29) when 266 new cases were recorded, giving a rate of 180.3 per 100k.
A further 32 positive cases of coronavirus were reported in Mid-Ulster on Monday. Causeway Coast and Glens topped the list with 59 new cases.
It brings the total number of Covid cases in Mid-Ulster since the crisis began to 5,197.
The BT80 postcode in Mid-Ulster is top of the coronavirus infection rate charts.
There were 93 postive cases recorded in the BT80 postal district the last seven days (November 30-December 6), giving a rate of 377 per 100k population.
In BT70 in Mid Ulster, there were 45 postive cases recorded in the last seven days (November 30-December 6), giving a rate of 205.4 per 100k.
And in BT71, there were 76 postive cases recorded in the last seven days (November 30-December 6), giving a rate of 174.3 per 100,000.
Overall, the Department of Health reported a further nine deaths and 397 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday.
It brings to 55,444 the number of new cases that has been diagnosed since the outbreak in NI. There are 416 patients with the virus in hospitals, with 29 patients in intensive care, of which 21 are on ventilators..
The Department of Health death toll now stands at 1,059.
Of these, 84 have been in Mid-Ulster.