CQC: Third of England care homes affected by Covid-19

More than a third of care homes in England have suffered an outbreak of Covid-19, according to a report published by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

The CQC’s ‘Covid-19 Insight’ analysis cited Public Health England data on outbreaks and clusters that suggested around 36% of care homes had been affected by the virus as of 10 May.

North-east England was the worst-hit region with outbreaks in 47% of 748 care homes.

London was the next worst at 42% of 1,394 homes with north-west England recording Covid-19 in 41% of 1,921 homes.

South-west England reported the fewest number of outbreaks, with 74% of 2,046 homes unaffected by the virus.

The Social Care Institute for Excellence said care settings had been used as “incubators” for Covid-19.

“Back in March when the country went into lockdown, if we had been told that over a third of care homes would be affected by Covid-19 we would have found that deeply shocking and worrying,” said chief executive Kathryn Smith (pictured).

“The fact that we’re perhaps less surprised than we should be by the 36% figure is possibly because we’ve become used to bad news when it comes to Covid-19 and care settings.”

Smith added: “It’s time to redouble our efforts to keep Covid-19 infections down in all care settings, but this can only be done by regular testing, PPE availability and the ending of any hospital referrals of people with Covid-19 back to care homes.”