The number of COVID related deaths in care homes in England and Wales has fallen for the first time in three months. The total number of deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending 4 December 2020 (Week 49) was 12,303, which was 153 fewer deaths than in Week 48.
New weekly data published by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) reveals that there were 544 COVID-related care home deaths in the week ending 4 December, 27 fewer than the previous week.
While the number of deaths registered was 15.0% above the five-year average (1,608 deaths higher) the latest weekly data marks the first drop in the number of COVID-related fatalities since early September (week 36).
On a year to date basis, there were 18,434 COVID-related deaths in care homes up to 4 December.
Deaths involving COVID-19 in care homes as a proportion of all deaths in care homes fell to 22.0%.
Data based on notifications to the CQC, shows there were 17,508 COVID related deaths in care homes between 10 April and 11 December.
In Wales, there were 1,057 COVID-related deaths notified to Care Inspectorate Wales between 1 March and 4 December.
The latest ONS figures come as care home staff continue to receive vaccinations with residents also beginning to receive their vaccines across the UK this week.
Earlier this month care assistant Shannon Cawley became the first care worker in the UK to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine on Monday 8th December.
Shannon visited University Hospital Coventry and Warwickshire to receive the first dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, she will return in three weeks to receive the second dose.
Shannon commented: “It is important for me to have received this vaccination to protect not only myself but to protect our Residents and Colleagues.”
The vaccine showed to be 94% effective in protecting people over the age of 65 from coronavirus in clinical trials, meaning that Shannon and other HC-One Colleagues to receive the vaccine will be helping to protect our Residents and local communities from COVID-19.
HC-One Area Director, Aaron Rendell, said: “Shannon is a shining example of what HC-One is all about, I look forward to celebrating more of our Colleagues receiving the coronavirus vaccine.”