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Britain's NHS strikes deal with private hospitals in coronavirus fight

LONDON, March 21 (Reuters) - Britain's National Health Service (NHS) has struck a deal with the country's independent hospitals that will see more beds, ventilators and thousands of extra healthcare staff made available from next week to fight the coronavirus outbreak.

NHS England said on Saturday that nearly 20,000 fully qualified staff will be joining the health service's response to the pandemic, helping manage an expected surge in cases. (Reporting Guy Faulconbridge and James Davey; Editing by Alexander Smith)