Amnesty International |As lockdown began, thousands of patients were sent from hospitals into care homes. In three months 18,562 people living in Care Homes died with COVID-19. Our report As if Expendable highlights the UK Government’s failure to protect older people in care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic
Cases of coronavirus are rising again in the build-up to winter, the government must learn lessons from its disastrous decisions and not repeat the same mistakes.
Sending thousands of patients untested from hospitals into Care Homes, at the height of a pandemic, was wrong and put lives at risk.
“These are individuals who have contributed to society all their lives and were denied the respect and dignity that you would give to a 42-year-old, they were [considered] expendable” Care Home owner and manager
The consequences of these decisions were enormous. Loneliness and isolation from friends and family impacted people’s mental health as well as their physical health.
A full independent public inquiry
We’re calling for a full independent public inquiry without further delay. But these take time and so to protect people through winter, an immediate initial phase of this Inquiry needs to report back by the 30 November. This inquiry must involve people in care homes and their families, including bereaved families.
Regular testing for people in care homes and their families.
We demand that regular testing is made available for care home residents, staff and visitors to ensure people in care homes can be safely visited by their loved ones. Regular testing can help break the isolation that is so damaging to people’s physical and mental health and could mean the difference between families being torn apart for months again.
Adequate PPE must also be provided to better protect people from COVID-19.
Review all ‘Do Not Attempt CPR’ orders added without the proper process.
The government must review all ‘Do Not Attempt CPR’ orders on care home residents that have been added without proper process. Blanket ‘Do Not Attempt CPR’ orders imposed without considering a person’s individual circumstances, is unacceptable – they violate a person’s right to life and health.