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Labour call for investigation over elderly death rates

Labour have called for an urgent investigation into the rise in deaths amongst older people this year.

A leaked report suggested around 600 more people a week died in the early part of 2013 compared with the last five years.

Andy Burnham MP, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary, responding to the Public Health England (PHE) report, said.

These figures raise major concerns about levels of care and support for older people and demand an urgent response from the Government. Labour has been warning for some time about the collapse of social care and the growing number of older people left alone and at risk. We now need to see action from the Government.

Earlier this year we revealed a shocking 66% increase in the number of people over 90 going in to A&E in blue-light ambulances – a sure sign of something going seriously wrong in the way we care for older people. In light of today’s revelations I am asking Jeremy Hunt to commission an urgent investigation into the causes of this increase and to consider urgent improvements in support for older people.

Rise in deaths this year will 'raise questions' over care

A new investigation into an unexpected rise in the number of deaths this year, particularly among the elderly, will "raise questions" over access to clinical care, according to an independent health body.

Professor John Ashton, president of independent health body the Faculty of Public Health, said:

It will no doubt raise questions about access to clinical care among the frail elderly and whether it's not as good as it was.

It's difficult to say, but it will provide ammunition to that argument.

He also suggested the elderly generation could have built up resistance to antibiotics after using them for decades or even that there was an accumulation of frail people "whose time has finally come".

Read: Investigation in to 'unexpected' rise in UK deaths

Investigation in to 'unexpected' rise in UK deaths

An investigation is under way into an unexpected rise in the number of deaths this year, particularly among the elderly, Public Health England (PHE) has said.

Investigation in to 'unexpected' rise in UK deaths. Credit: Barry Batchelor/PA Wire

Around 600 more people a week have died in the early part of 2013 compared with the last five years, adding up to around 10,000 people, The Times (£) reports.

Overall there was an increase of 5% in the mortality rate between early 2012 and early 2013 - up by 23,400.The figures were detailed in a report by PHE seen by the newspaper.

Health experts have suggested the spike in deaths among those aged 85 years and older could be down to cuts to council care, resistance to medication, or a levelling out in life expectancy.


  1. Calendar

Police release statement about death

HUMBERSIDE Police were contacted by Scarborough General Hospital, shortly after 0600hrs yesterday morning (Sunday 17 March ), after a Bridlington man had been taken to the hospital by a friend in a serious condition.

The 23-year-old man was sadly pronounced dead at hospital and the police notified.

The circumstances of the man's death are not clear and officers are currently undertaking enquiries to establish events leading to his death.

There were no signs of violence and a post mortem examination is due to take place tomorrow (Tuesday 19 March) which is hoped may provide further information.

– Humberside Police
  1. Central

Girl dies in children's home fire

A teenage girl in care has died in a fire at a children's home in Shropshire.

The fire took place on Saturday night at the Bryn Melyn Care home in the remote village of Bagley Marsh, her two professional carers were unharmed.

The teenager was pronounced dead at the scene and is yet to be formally identified. Police are treating her death as unexplained.

The managing director of the private company which runs the home said:

"Our thoughts go out in particular to her family and friends, as well as the care, education and clinical staff who have worked so closely with her during her time with us.

"We have instigated a full internal review and will be cooperating fully with all the relevant local emergency services and Ofsted to ensure that this terrible event is investigated thoroughly and the cause of the fire established."

– Steve Nevitt, Managing Director

Statement from Cllr Rachel Andrew of Walsall Council said:

"We would wish to express our deep sympathy with the family and friends of the young woman who died in a fire at Bagley Marsh residential home yesterday.

"The young woman was looked after by the local authority and was placed at Bagley Marsh, an independent residential provider in Shropshire.

"We are offering support to her family and working with the police and other agencies in the investigation."

– Cllr Rachel Andrew the portfolio holder for children's services