Catalogue of errors contributed to catastrophic care death toll, says UNISON

Care sector was out of sight, out of mind

Commenting on a report published today (Friday) by the National Audit Office on how the government prepared the NHS and social care for the Covid-19 pandemic, UNISON assistant general secretary Christina McAnea said

“This is a catalogue of errors and highlights once again a complete absence of planning or thought for social care.

“Discharging patients to care homes without testing was simply scandalous and accelerated the spread of the virus among an obviously high-risk group.

“This report confirms what staff have said from the start, that the supply of protective equipment in social care was woefully inadequate.

“And it makes clear the government doesn’t know how many people have actually been tested in care.

“It’s plain the care sector was out of sight, out of mind in the early stages of the pandemic. The result has been a tragic and catastrophic loss of life.

“When the government announced compulsory face coverings for the NHS but made no mention of care, it was clear lessons haven’t been learned. The sector’s still being treated as an afterthought.”

Notes to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services – in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in public, voluntary and private sectors.

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