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Army helicopters may be sent to evacuate Covid patients from Isle of Wight amid surge

Exclusive: 74-fold rise in cases, fuelled by Christmas mixing, leaves island’s only hospital struggling

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Military helicopters could be used within days to airlift coronavirus patients from the Isle of Wight, the island’s medical director has said, after an “astronomical” rise in infections fuelled by mixing and visitors over Christmas.

A 74-fold increase in cases saw the Isle of Wight record the 13th highest infection rate in the UK this week, from having one of the lowest in early December.

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