Scale of care home scandal astonishing say Greens

The scale of the care home scandal at the outset of the Covid19 crisis which led to people who had tested positive, and others who had not been tested at all, being discharged into care homes is astonishing, Scottish Greens Health Spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP has said.

A Public Health Scotland report  published today reveals that 81.9% of those discharged from hospital to care homes between 1st March and 21st April were not tested. The report also reveals that 78 people discharged from hospital to a care home during this period had received a positive test.

The report also reveals that even after testing was made mandatory, 7% of those discharged from hospital to care homes between 22nd April and 31st May were not tested for Covid19.

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

“Care homes are supposed to be safe havens for some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and it is an absolute tragedy that so many people have been fatally let down in this way. That so many families have lost a loved one due to systematic policy failures is an appalling reflection on the handling of this crisis.

“We’ve known for some time that people who had tested positive or who had not been tested at all were discharged to care homes, but the sheer scale of this scandal is absolutely astonishing.

“The Scottish Government has so far failed to provide a satisfactory explanation as to why it allowed so many potentially infectious people to be discharged to care homes.

“It’s essential that lessons are urgently learned from Spring, to minimise a repeat of this entirely unacceptable situation this winter. The recent outbreaks at care homes in Edinburgh and West Lothian leave me concerned that those lessons have not yet been fully learned.”