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The Armed Forces have sent 200 personnel into NHS hospitals across London to plug staff shortages.

The Ministry of Defence will provide 40 defence medics and 160 general duty personnel for the next three weeks.

Hospitals in London have been hit hard by staff absences, with thousands off sick or isolating as the Omicron variant surged through the capital.

Earlier this week, the PM said he hoped England could “ride out” the latest wave without further restrictions.

Pressure on London hospitals has increased over the past month, with 4,000 patients currently in hospital with Covid compared with 1,100 in early December.

The Royal College of Nursing’s director for England, Patricia Marquis, said the deployment showed the government could not deny there was

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