CQC has confirmed that it will publish data relating to notifications received from individual care homes relating to deaths of people with COVID-19 between 10 April 2020 and 31 March 2021. This is in addition to the data CQC already publishes on a weekly basis with ONS on the total number of care home service users who have died with COVID-19.
CQC expects to be able to publish data regarding location level death notifications following its July Board Meeting on 21 July 2021. CQC stated that “This date has been chosen primarily because our analysts, and colleagues from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), believe that it will allow enough time to complete the additional quality assurance processes required for publication. Providers will be given advance sight of the information they have previously provided to us to ensure they have had the right conversations with people in their care and their loved ones. It will also give our Board the opportunity to have a full public discussion about this data.”
The data will enable the public to view the total number of death notifications relating to COVID-19 in care homes over the course of the pandemic, as well as how many death notifications CQC received in a local authority area.
CQC has said that, “The only factor that would prevent publication on 21 July is if an issue with data quality emerges during the quality assurance process. While we currently have no reason to believe this might be the case, we will delay publication if we have any concerns about the accuracy of the data. We are acutely aware that every single number represents an individual life lost to COVID-19 and we have a responsibility to represent these figures – and these lives – as accurately as possible.”
CQC’s statement can be accessed here.