TWO more people have now died at Royal Bolton Hospital after contracting coronavirus.

Figures published by NHS England yesterday afternoon linked two new deaths at the borough hospital to covid-19.

Although their deaths were added to official statistics yesterday, both patients passed away on Tuesday, September 22.

The latest news came as Royal Bolton Hospital revealed a rapid rise in the number of coronavirus patients admitted to their care.

Four patients are currently in a critical condition, with 30 other patients receiving treatment for covid-19.

Hospital staff "expect that to rise"

Speaking at a board meeting of Bolton NHS Trust on Thursday, chief operating officer Andy Ennis said: “In Bolton we are far ahead of anyone else in the reproduction rate.

“Our challenges are very different than in March when patients stopped attending and we literally halved the number of patients in hospital as well. This time it will not happen.

"The rate will continue to rise for some time yet, how or when we don’t know."

READ MORE: Health boss reveals rapid rise in coronavirus admissions at Royal Bolton Hospital

This is the first time in more than a month and a half that two deaths were recorded in a day.

Two patient deaths were linked to coronavirus on August 5, with six coronavirus-related deaths recorded on six separate days since then.

Monthly deaths appear to be rising, after the deaths of just five patients were linked to coronavirus in both July and August, down from seven related deaths in June.

So far, six patient deaths have been connected to the virus in September, with 237 deaths at the borough's hospital attributed to covid-19 since the pandemic began in March.

An update on the number of cases is not currently available due to a delay in the government's coronavirus data dashboard.