Liverpool's top medical director says hospitals are treating more patients for the CCP virus than they did in the spring when the first pandemic wave was at its peak.
Dr. Tristan Cope, medical director of Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Trust, said the numbers were continuing to rise in the city, which has one of the highest infection rates in the country.
Liverpool was the first region to be placed into the highest alert level of the three-tier system introduced at the start of last week.
Cope said that it was important for the people in the region to adhere to social distancing regulations.
“Treating so many Covid patients in addition to the usual acute and emergency care of patients with non-Covid conditions puts a huge strain on Liverpool Hospital's staff"
“We can all help reduce that pressure by doing the right thing and taking some very simple measures: washing our hands frequently, keeping our distance from others from outside our household, and wearing face coverings in indoor settings.”
Infection rates appear to have dipped recently in the region. However, it still has one of the highest rates of infection, as measured by positive tests, in the country.
The chief nurse of the Liverpool regional trust, Dianne Brown, confirmed that COVID-19 hospital admissions were higher than in April, saying it was important to "recognise the impact this is having on our staff."
She thanked the staff for "doing an amazing job," saying that it was "mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausting."
The mayor of Liverpool had previously warned that the current wave was threatening to overwhelm the city's hospitals.
Liverpool was the first region in England to go into a “very high” alert level, followed later by Lancashire and Greater Manchester.
The three-tier system announced last week creates a standardised national system but will work in conjunction with additional locally tailored measures.
In Tier 3 it means an automatic tightening of restrictions on pubs and a clampdown on household mixing.
Many in the hospitality industry have criticised the new system. The British Beer and Pub Association said that the latest decision was unfair and that pubs had been unfairly “singled out.”
The central government has been negotiating support packages with local leaders, and today announced further financial support for businesses impacted by Tier 2 restrictions.
The announcement came after widespread complaints from pub landlords and restauranters that being in Tier 2 was the "worst of all worlds."