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Care home and hospice deaths increase coronavirus toll as 2,000 added to national figure

PUBLISHED: 11:03 14 April 2020 | UPDATED: 16:38 14 April 2020

The ONS latest figures show the number of deaths that occurred up to 3 April but were registered up to 11 April, involving COVID-19 was 6,235.Picture:  Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The ONS latest figures show the number of deaths that occurred up to 3 April but were registered up to 11 April, involving COVID-19 was 6,235.Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) released on Tuesday shows that as of April 3, the government tally includes just two-thirds of the people who have died, up to that date, with Covid-19 mentioned on their death certificate.

The data showed show there were 6,235 deaths which involved coronavirus up to April 3 (registered up to April 11) anywhere in England and Wales compared to the figure of 4,093 in hospitals at the same stage.

The Department of Health releases daily updates on the number of deaths in hospitals, which refers to deaths reported to that date and may have happened days or weeks earlier.

The ONS counts deaths where Covid-19 (including suspected cases) was mentioned on the death certificate, regardless of location.

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Nick Stripe, head of health analysis and life events at the ONS, said: “The latest comparable data for deaths involving Covid-19 with a date of death up to April 3, show there were 6,235 deaths in England and Wales. When looking at data for England, this is 15pc higher than the NHS numbers as they include all mentions of Covid-19 on the death certificate, including suspected Covid-19, as well as deaths in the community.

“The 16,387 deaths [all causes] that were registered in England and Wales during the week ending 3 April is the highest weekly total since we started compiling weekly deaths data in 2005.”

In year to date analysis, the ONS found of deaths involving the coronavirus (Covid-19) up to April 3, 90pc, or 3,716 deaths, occurred in hospital. The remaining registered deaths occurred in the community, of which 33 deaths were registered in hospices, 217 in care homes and 136 in private homes in England and Wales.

The east of England saw a further 377 deaths registered which make mention of Covid-19, taking the region’s total to 525. The breakdown for the east of England includes, Norfolk and Waveney, Bedfordshire, Luton, Milton Keynes, Hertfordshire, West Essex, Cambridgeshire, Peterborough, Mid and South Essex, Suffolk and North East Essex.

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To date, 117 people have died in Norfolk who have been treated at the county’s three hospitals for the virus.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is also set to begin publishing figures of the number of suspected and confirmed deaths and cases at adult social care providers across the country.

The CQC said death notifications had shown “significant increase” in its adult social care providers since late March.

Kate Terroni, CQC’s chief inspector of adult social care, said: “From this week, the death notifications we collect from providers will allow them to report whether the death was of a person with suspected or confirmed Covid-19.

“As well as providing a clearer picture of deaths, this will provide a regional view which allows an assessment of which areas are most impacted and may need additional support as a result.

“We are acutely aware that adult social care providers are facing extraordinary pressures, and our priority is working with them to provide support in these unprecedented times.

“Providers across the sector are raising concerns directly with us, including access to Personal Protective Equipment and challenges with workforce and we urge them to keep doing so.

“We will provide information and advice- and we will ensure concerns are escalated to local and national partners so that action is taken to support providers to keep people safe.

“In support of this, CQC will be launching a tool this week for home care providers to update daily about the impact of Covid-19 on their service both confirmed and suspected cases. CQC will act as a hub for this information alongside information from the NHS.”

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