Nearly 200 Scottish care homes took in mainly untested patients – BBC news

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In the early days of the pandemic more than half of elderly hospital patients discharged to nearly 200 Scottish care homes had not been tested for Covid.

Data obtained by the BBC from Public Health Scotland (PHS) provides the clearest picture yet on which homes took in untested and positive patients.

A lawyer acting for bereaved families at an upcoming inquiry called the data “explosive evidence”.

Aamer Anwar claimed it was proof that people’s lives had been put at risk.

The figures, which were released 11 months after BBC Scotland had asked for them, focus on hospital discharges between March and May 2020 – which was the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

The PHS data, released under freedom of information laws, appears in this interactive dashboard and shows every hospital discharge by individual care home in Scotland.

It reveals what proportion of people discharged were untested or positive and what proportion of beds might have been occupied by discharged patients.

Although the data cannot be used to link discharges to outbreaks or deaths in any given home, solicitor Mr Anwar believed it proved that lives had been put at risk.

He is acting on behalf of members of Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice and told BBC Scotland: “The data supports what many bereaved families have always suspected, that elderly patients were discharged without any regard for a duty of care owed to them, or to residents and care home staff.

“Many of the grieving families I represent describe what took place in our care homes as a massacre that could have been avoided, had a simple test taken place prior to discharge.

“The data makes for explosive evidence for a pending Scottish Covid-19 Public Inquiry.”

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