Jackie Baillie MSP for Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh & Lomond has backed calls for the Lord Advocate to investigate reports of Covid-19 patients who were knowingly discharged from hospital to care homes.
It follows a report from the Sunday Post that revealed that at least 37 COVID-19 patients were discharged from hospital to care homes earlier in the pandemic and recently published figures from the National Records (NRS) of Scotland on Covid-19 deaths.
NRS figures into deaths from Covid-19 have revealed that people living in the most deprived areas of Scotland are twice as likely to die from Covid-19 than those living in the least deprived areas. The report showed that locally up until the 9th August there were 124 deaths where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate in West Dunbartonshire, and 59 of these deaths were in care homes. In Argyll & Bute it was 64 deaths with 23 in care homes.
Commenting Jackie Baillie MSP said:
“It’s concerning that Scots living in the poorest postcodes are twice as likely to die from Covid-19 as those in the wealthiest areas. This is a postcode lottery which underlines long running health inequalities in Scotland. We are seeing a growing divide between rich and poor in Scotland, following years of austerity by both SNP and Tory Governments.
“But what is shocking is that Covid-19 patients were discharged into care homes. Care home staff who worked incredibly hard during the pandemic had no chance of stopping the spread of infection. It will be distressing for them and for families affected by this, which is why it is vital that they are provided with answers.
“Care homes deaths during the pandemic have been the crisis within a crisis. Tragically, thousands of older people have died and there must be accountability for decisions that led to the virus getting into care homes in the first place.
“That’s why I’m backing calls for the Lord Advocate and Police Scotland to examine how this happened, and whether any legal action needs to be taken. The Scottish Government has failed to be transparent and that is unacceptable.
NOTES TO EDITOR:
- Sunday Post report https://www.sundaypost.com/fp/hospitals-sent-patients-into-care-homes-after-they-had-tested-positive-for-covid-19/
- Data cited from NRS report here https://www.nrscotland.gov.uk/files//statistics/covid19/covid-deaths-report-week-32.pdf