BASINGSTOKE and North Hampshire hospital are currently treating 95 patients who have tested positive for Covid-19.

It comes after the latest regional figures, released yesterday, show that more than 1,500 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the county.

According to Alex Whitfield, chief executive of Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, 95 people are in care at the hospital for the virus as of this morning, with 42 more at Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester.

The patients at Basingstoke hospital are split over five wards, with a number in intensive care. There are also 29 more patients that could potentially have Covid-19, but the Trust are waiting for test results to come back.

Hampshire has been one of the worst hit areas in the UK, with the Hampshire County Council area being the second-highest upper tier local authority area in the country, behind Birmingham.

The county has a total of 1,562 patients, including 1,241 across the HCC area, which excludes Southampton and Portsmouth.

179 people across the county have died from coronavirus.

23 more deaths were announced today, with eight of these occurring at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who run Basingstoke, Andover and Winchester hospitals.

This brings the total number of deaths there to 49.

Additionally, an extra ten were recorded at University Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, and five at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, bringing the totals there to 45 and 85 respectively.

However, Ms Whitfield said that she wasn't sure of the reasons why Hampshire has been particularly badly-hit.

"Local authorities are very different sizes, so Hampshire is a much bigger local authority than Southampton City for example, so I think it's not always very clear when they do those absolute numbers that you're talking about a million people or something and Southampton is around 200,000.

"Otherwise, in terms of why that would be the case, I don't know. I could speculate that the north of Hampshire is close to London and things came out earlier, so it's a timing issue, but we haven't really got good data on why it's different in different parts of the country."

Whilst Ms Whitfield doesn't anticipate the region's hospitals filling up soon, she said that there is an agreement in place that would allow Trusts to work together in case hospitals are maxed out.

"There's lots of conversations that have been going on in the eventuality that one hospital runs out of capacity and there is a daily call that is happening so that people can discuss the situation in their hospitals.

"At the minute we've got quite a lot of capacity so we don't see ourselves needing to use that any time soon, but it's there just in case."

She added that there has been a "one NHS response" to the pandemic.