People are avoiding hospital because they are nervous of catching COVID-19 Our response to ONS weekly deaths in England and Wales

23 June 2020

Commenting on Office for National Statistics (ONS) data on deaths registered weekly in England and Wales: week ending 12 June 2020, Dr Jennifer Dixon, Chief Executive at the Health Foundation, said:

'Today’s data show that deaths from COVID-19, and overall excess deaths, are decreasing. But while deaths in hospital are now below normal levels, deaths at home – just over 900 excess deaths in the week ending 12 June – remain higher than usual for this time of year.

'At the same time, there has been a 30% fall in emergency admissions to hospital in May compared to the previous year. People are avoiding hospital because they are nervous of catching COVID-19. Health Foundation and Ipsos Mori polling published earlier this month found that 47% of people would feel uncomfortable using their local hospital in the short term if the need arose, and three quarters (76%) would be concerned about being exposed to COVID-19.

'As COVID-19 now recedes from hospitals, a key question is whether enough has been done to reassure people of their safety when accessing care, balanced against the risks of not seeking care.'

Media contact

Simon Perry
020 7257 2093

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