Care Home Covid Deaths Decline For First Time
Data released yesterday has found that the number of deaths linked to Covid-19 in care homes is falling for the first time since the first recorded virus death at the start of April.
According to the weekly ‘Deaths Registered in England and Wales’, 2,423 care home resident deaths attributed Covid-19 as the cause of death in the week up to May 1. This figure had dropped from 2,800 from the week previous.
Whilst this suggests the number of fatalities may have peaked, the number of care home deaths attributed to the virus exceeded the number of hospital deaths during this week for the first time.
It also means that 9,700 care home deaths have now been linked to Covid-19 since April 3. Since April 10, the number of deaths in care homes is also around double the average number of 3,000 monthly deaths recorded between January and March.
At its peak during the week ending April 24, almost 9,000 care home deaths were recorded, with over a third (37.8 per cent) linked to Covid-19. Up to May 1, this figure dropped to 7,000 deaths with over 2,423 linked to Covid-19. The death toll was also 8,012 deaths higher than the five year average according to the ONS data.
The weekly death rate, for all deaths in the UK, has exceeded the five year average for seven consecutive weeks and excess deaths in the UK are now 50,000 higher than originally expected in 2020.
Nick Stripe, head of health analysis at the Office for National Statistics (ONS), said the 17,953 deaths recorded in the week to May 1 was declining but still a significant issue:
“The weekly figure was about 4,000 lower than it was the week before but it is still 8,000 above the average that we would expect to see in this week at this time of year.
“So it is actually the seventh highest weekly total since this data set started in 1993 so we have had four out of the top seven weeks in the last four weeks.”