Most care home residents with Covid-19 die in their care home, new data shows

The majority of care home residents with Covid-19 die in their care home, with just over one in four dying in hospital, new analysis shows.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that just over one in four of all deaths of care home residents in England and Wales between March 2 and May 1 involved Covid-19.

Some 45,899 care home residents died during this period, of which 12,526 (27%) were deaths where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.

From these 12,526 coronavirus deaths, 9,039 (72%) occurred within a care home.

A further 3,444 (27%) occurred at hospital.

The ONS also found that Covid-19 was the leading cause of death for male care home residents in England and Wales during the period, accounting for 30.3% of deaths.

Pre-existing health conditions in deaths involving Covid-19 among care home residents
(PA Graphics)

Covid-19 was the second leading cause of death in female care home residents, after dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, accounting for 23.5% of deaths.

Of all hospital deaths involving Covid-19 during this period, 14.6% were accounted for by care home residents.

Meanwhile, 11% of care home resident deaths in England and Wales involving Covid-19 were people who had no pre-existing health condition.

The remaining 89% had at least one underlying health issue, with the most common main condition being dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

This related to 5,115 deaths (42.5% of all deaths involving Covid-19).

Other conditions included ischaemic heart diseases (the main pre-existing condition in 5.5% of Covid-19 deaths), chronic lower respiratory diseases (5.4%) and flu and pneumonia (4.9%).

Since March, there has been an increase both in deaths involving Covid-19 and those not involving Covid-19 among care home residents, the ONS data also showed.

Some 73,180 deaths occurred among care home residents in England and Wales up to May 1 this year (and registered up to May 9) – 23,136 more than the same period last year.

Some 12,526 of these “excess deaths” mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate.

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