More than 300 people have died in Wiltshire care homes since the beginning of the pandemic, official figures reveal.
According to data from the Office for National Statistics in 2020, 238 people were registered as having died in Wiltshire’s care homes up to January 1, 2021. In 2021, up to April 30, 132 care home residents have died and had Covid-19 included on the death certificate.
In Wiltshire, 4,376 out of 5,393 eligible staff, including agency workers, at older adult care homes had received a first Covid vaccine dose by April 11, according to latest NHS figures.
This means that 19 per cent of those eligible have not had a jab. The unvaccinated proportion has reduced slightly from four weeks previously, when it was 21 per cent.
Previously, this number has been put down to health concerns or other factors.
Director of public health, Kate Blackburn said that over the past few weeks the number of Covid-19 cases in Wiltshire Care homes has remained low. Additionally, for the fourth week running there has been no deaths as a result of coronavirus in care homes.
Kate Blackburn said: “Compared to the start of the pandemic, we now have regular testing of both staff and residents, Covid vaccinations, enhanced infection prevention and control measures and specific guidelines for safe visiting in care homes. In combination, these steps reduce the risk of Covid to those living and working in care homes and could not have been achieved without the hard work of our care home staff.
“There have sadly been a number of deaths in Wiltshire care homes during the Covid pandemic and our thoughts go out to those who have died, the families who have lost a loved one, and the staff who have worked to support people during this time.”
Kate Blackburn said the continued dedication of care home staff has been pivotal through a challenging year adapting to the global pandemic. “The continued dedication of the care home workforce has been a huge achievement through what has been a challenging year and their dedication to infection prevention and control has been pivotal in achieving this position, for which I would like to extend my thanks,” she continued.