The number of coronavirus-linked deaths in care homes rocketed in a short space of time, according to the latest Government data. At the daily briefing, Deputy Chief Scientific Adviser Professor Angela McLean revealed a graph recording registered deaths from COVID-19 by the place the deaths occured. It showed the horrifying reality of care home fatalities that have yet to decrease in number.
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Professor McLean said: “While deaths in hospital have been falling, deaths in care homes to the week April 24 were still rising.
“To the extent that in that week, deaths in care homes were about half as many as all the deaths in hospitals.
“I think what that shows us is that there is a real issue we need to get to grips with about what is happening in care homes.”
A further 693 deaths has brought the total confirmed in the UK up to 29,427.
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Professor Angela McLean
A Newsnight investigation revealed that the true number of coronavirus deaths in the UK may be far higher than thought when considering the real number of care home fatalities.
BBC Policy Editor Lewis Goodall revealed leaked statistics from County Durham County Council that showed that 45 percent of all of their COVID-19 deaths so far have come from care homes, while only 55 percent have been recorded in hospitals.
Mr Goodall warned that care home deaths could be up 40 percent on the average for the year so far.
He produced a graph comparing the minimum and maximum deaths a week since 1996 with those registered in 2020.
The total number is now 29,427.
He said: “By my calculations, care home deaths are actually up 40 percent on the average for the year so far.
“So this particular council, just one council absolutely, but it does tally with other statistics that I’m getting from other local authorities.
“This council has 40 percent more deaths in care homes than it would typically see in the year up to this point.”
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The Newsnight Editor continued: “We are seeing considerably more numbers of deaths in care homes.
“I think it’s also important in terms of marking the Government’s homework as well.
“We saw the Prime Minister today, and lots of other ministers, say we’ve had a great success because the NHS hasn’t been overwhelmed.
“Indeed that is an enormous success and many people thought that it would be.
“But of course if many of these deaths are taking place in care homes and not in hospital, then really that shows us a whole other theatre of war, if you like, which isn’t being accounted for.”