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Coronavirus care home death rate falls slightly

The number of coronavirus-related deaths in care homes has fallen slightly, but still stands at more than 6,000 in the last month, according to new figures.

Figures released this morning (5 April) by the Office for National Statistics and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) show that the watchdog was notified of 2,044 coronavirus-related deaths in care homes for the week ending 1 May.

This represents a slight fall from the 2,379 coronavirus-related deaths that the CQC were notified of in the week ending 24 April.

Although it is still higher than the 1,873 figure recorded by the CQC for the week ending 17 April.

According to the CQC figures, there have been a total of 6,296 coronavirus-related deaths in care homes since the week ending 17 April.

Separate figures by the ONS published today show a total of 5,890 coronavirus-related deaths in care homes registered up until the week ending 24 April.

According to the ONS, the provisional number of deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending 24 April 2020 (Week 17) was 21,997, a decrease of 354 deaths registered compared with the previous week.

The ONS said this is the first decrease in the number of deaths since the week ending 20 March.

Of the deaths registered in Week 17, 8,237 mentioned “novel coronavirus (COVID-19)”, which is 37.4% of all deaths, which is a decrease of 521 deaths compared with the previous week.

In London, more than half (50.5%) of deaths registered in Week 17 involved COVID-19.

The North West and North East also had a high proportion of COVID-19 deaths, accounting for 38.8% and 38.0%, respectively, of deaths registered in these regions.

In Wales, there were 413 deaths registered in Week 17 involving COVID-19, accounting for 36.7% of all deaths registered in the country.

Responding to the latest figures, the assistant general secretary of Unison, Christina McAnea said: ‘Each of these deaths is a tragedy for the families who have lost a loved one. It’s not too late to save lives. The rate of infection can be reduced if care workers have proper access to protective kit.

‘This would help stop the virus spreading between residents or being brought in from outside. But this can only happen if the government and employers ensure workers get the personal protective equipment they need. Testing also needs to be rolled out rapidly.’

Photo Credit – Pixabay

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