Over 850 health and social care workers have now died of COVID-19

In some groups health and social care workers are three times more likely to die of COVID-19 than the general population.

James McKay
25 January 2021
Nurse walking in street

Health and social care workers are still fighting for adequate PPE.

Over 850 health and social care workers have died of Coronavirus in England and Wales since March, according to new data.

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Official data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that 883 health and social care workers have tragically lost their lives to COVID-19 since March 2020.

The data reveals that male health and social care workers are around twice as likely to die from COVID-19 than their female counterparts.

A total of 469 deaths among social care workers were registered in England and Wales between March 9 and December 28 2020, with rates of 79.0 deaths per 100,000 males and 35.9 deaths per 100,000 females.

In addition, a total of 414 deaths among health care workers were registered during the same period with rates of 44.9 deaths per 100,000 males and 17.3 deaths per 100,000 females.

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The data is limited to those in England and Wales between 20 to 64 years so the true figure across the UK could be much higher.

We need to care for our carers.

Previous data has also shown that those from Black, Asian, and minority ethnic background are also shown to be at an increased risk of dying.

Fellow health and social care workers have shared the stories of some of those that have died their with NursingNotes in our digital memorial.

Nearly a year after COVID-19 reached the UK health and social care workers are still fighting for adequate personal protective equipment (PPE). 

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Anthony Johnson, Lead Organiser for Nurses United UK, responded to the news; “There is no way for us to do our jobs without providing hands on care.

“We unfortunately are one of the world leaders in the death rate for health and social care professionals per capita. We needed better PPE and a public track and trace service to avoid this.

“I hope that families are given justice for their loved ones and I hope that this Government listens when we demand that they care for our carers and provide us the protection we need to care for the public”.

Heart-breaking.

Dame Donna Kinnair, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said: “The loss of life of healthcare workers is heart-breaking and is felt profoundly by every member of the nursing community. Our thoughts are with the family and friends of all of them.

“The fact the rate of death amongst nursing staff is significantly higher than the general population highlights the absolute need to properly investigate why this is happening and give them the protection they need.

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“We also need to see real-time information on the demographics including ethnicity of those who have lost their lives. We have repeatedly called for those from BAME background to be given greater protection.

“Only with quality information and proper reporting can we have confidence that the full loss of life is known, and no family feels their loved one has been forgotten. Nursing staff are fearful, angry and too many are mourning the loss of colleagues”

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