MORE than 20 people who tested positive for Covid-19 are now being treated in Hampshire hospitals, it has been revealed.

Health bosses have confirmed that 20 patients who tested positive for coronavirus are currently being treated at the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester, while three people are treated at the Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital.

The news has been confirmed by  Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

It comes as the number of Covid-19 cases across the county continues to rise.

Health bosses said they have plans to deal with an increase in demand at both hospitals in Winchester and Basingstoke.

Details of the plans are yet to be revealed.

But in a statement, Dr Lara Alloway, chief medical officer at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "We have a number of plans ready to put into action in the event that we see an increase in the number of patients who need to be admitted to hospital with COVID-19, and are working closely with our partners across health and social care to ensure our patients are in the right place for their needs, and receive the best possible care.

"These steps, along with our usual winter plans, mean we are ready to continue to care for all of our patients who need us."

She also urged residents to continue to follow the current guidelines and added: "As the number of cases of Coronavirus continue to rise nationally, it remains critically important that members of the community do what they can to keep themselves and others safe by socially distancing, wearing a mask and frequently washing their hands – this simple advice really can make a big difference.”

The news comes as Hampshire has been placed in Tier One as the Prime Minister announced a new three-tier system to try to stop the spread of coronavirus.

This means that residents will face the basic national rules currently in force including the closure of pubs, bars and restaurants at 10pm and the rule of six (the number of people who can meet up) both indoors and outdoors.

University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust has also been approached for comment.