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Currently, there are only 2.5 hospital beds per 1,000 people across the country - but there are significant regional variations. Potential ‘hospital deserts’ highlighted by the University’s report include Powys in Wales, while rural areas including Suffolk, Rutland, Northumberland and the Isle of Wight are among those in England.
Assuming all beds were to be used for coronavirus patients, the report suggests that London only has enough to support 4.7% of its population - while Cornwall could only support 1.5%. In urban areas, patients could more easily be shifted between different hospitals to relieve pressure as demographics often vary enormously within those settings.
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