‘Do Not Resuscitate’ scandal led to Disabled People accounting for 3 in 5 Covid deaths according to ONS figures


We told you back in February how the Care Quality Commission (CQC) had found that thirty-four-percent of people working in health and social care were pressured into placing ‘do not attempt cardiopulmonary resuscitation’ (DNACPR) orders on Covid patients who suffered from disabilities and learning difficulties, without involving the patient or their families in the decision.

Well today we can confirm this scandal led to disabled people accounting for 3 in every 5 Covid deaths according to ONS figures.

The CQC was commissioned by the Department for Health and Social Care, under section 48 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008, to conduct a special review of Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) decisions taken during the COVID-19 pandemic (full report can be found here).

The investigation was carried out due to concerns around the blanket application of DNACPR decisions, including applying them to groups of people rather than on an assessment of each individual, and due to reports of these decisions being made without involving the person concerned.

The CQC found upon their investigation that almost 10% of people using services or their families had experienced pressure or use of DNACPR orders. They also found that thirty-four per cent of people working in health and/or social care said they were under pressure to put DNACPR’s in place without involving the person.

There were also examples from feedback to the CQC where care had not been provided to the person with a DNACPR in place – for example, a care home not calling an ambulance straight away, a delay in calling doctors, or someone who felt pressured to agree to an advance COVID-19 care plan that stated that they would stay at home without treatment if they contracted COVID-19.

With atrocious policies like this in place is it any surprise to find that of the 50,888 alleged Covid deaths that occurred between January and November 2020, 30,296 were people who had a disability?

According to the ONS the risk of death involving Covid-19 was 3.1 times greater for disabled men that what it was for non-disabled men. But the statistics are even worse for women with the risk of death involving Covid-19 being 3.5 times greater for disabled women than what it was for non-disabled women.

But it gets worse – the ONS have concluded that the risk of death involving Covid-19 was 3.7 times greater for both men and women with learning disabilities compared with men and women who did not have a learning disability.

The ONS state in their summary in relation to deaths of disabled people that – ‘no single factor explains the considerably raised risk of death involving COVID-19 among disabled people‘.

But in relation to deaths of people with learning difficulties the ONS said – ‘the largest effect was associated with living in a care home or other communal establishment.

There it is, in black and white – the largest effect was living in a care home. Care homes in which the Care Quality Commission found that 34% of staff were pressured to place do not resuscitate orders on people with learning difficulties without informing the person or their family.

Care homes in which the Care Quality Commission found care had not been provided to people with learning difficulties which included not calling an ambulance straight away, and delaying calling a doctor.

If this isn’t murder on a mass scale then we don’t know what is. This should be on the front page of every newspaper but instead it has been brushed under the carpet.

It’s a national disgrace!


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