Almost 20,000 care home residents in England and Wales have died with coronavirus, the majority dying in their care home, official figures show.
Death certificates for 19,394 residents mentioned “novel coronavirus” between March 2 and June 12, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
Covid-19 accounted for 29% of the deaths of care home residents over this period and a fifth of all deaths of care home residents this year.
The latest data includes all care home residents who died with coronavirus either at their care home or in hospital.
This pushes the overall care home resident death figure 32% higher than the 14,658 deaths in care homes reported by the ONS on Tuesday.
Three-quarters (74.9%) of residents died in their care home, while a quarter (24.8%) died in hospital, the figures show.
Some 65 residents, representing 0.3% of the total, died in a separate location such as a private home or hospice.
There has been a slowdown in the number of overall deaths and those involving Covid-19 in care home residents since mid-April, the ONS said.
There have also been 819 deaths involving Covid-19 of people receiving domiciliary care between April 10 and June 19, according to Care Quality Commission data.
There were 6,523 deaths from all causes over this period of people receiving care in their own home – 3,628 deaths more than the average over the past three years.
Separately, a survey looking at infection in more than 9,000 care homes in England between May 26 and June 20 estimates that more than half (56%) of the care homes have had at least one confirmed case of coronavirus.
Some 5,126 care homes responded to the Vivaldi study, commissioned by the Department of Health and Social Care, and estimates were produced by weighting the actual responses to take account of the care homes which did not respond.
Of these, 20% of residents and 7% of staff are estimated to have tested positive for Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, as reported by care home managers.
Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer, said: “GMB warned the Government from the start they were failing to protect care home residents and workers during this pandemic.
“Ministers focussed all their efforts on the NHS – leaving some of the most vulnerable people and workers in our society exposed.
“They had no plan for social care.
“Elderly patients were discharged from hospital and admitted into care homes without being tested for coronavirus in order to clear beds so that the NHS was not overwhelmed.
“The Government has failed our social care members when it came to pay, when it came to PPE and when it came to testing. GMB had to lobby to government for carers to get even the most basic personal protective equipment.
“They must take responsibility for their handling of Covid-19 and immediately address the issues of low wages and no sick pay for this predominantly low paid work female workforce.
“Ministers negligent approach to care during this crisis has meant thousands more died than should have done.”
Related – PM “bitterly regrets” care home crisis as new data reveals almost 20,000 residents have perished
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