The true death toll from the coronavirus in England and Wales up to April 17 was 54% higher than the UK government’s daily figures, according to Britain’s Office of National Statistics (ONS).
There were 22,300 coronavirus-related deaths in England and Wales up to April 17, according to the ONS data. These were registered by April 25. By comparison, the UK government said 14,451 people died from the disease in England and Wales up to April 17.
The 54% difference is caused by multiple factors.
The government’s daily updates only include deaths in hospitals. They do not include people who die in other locations, including private homes, hospices and care homes. The updates also fail to account for a lag in reporting some deaths.
On Twitter the ONS said it included all instances where Covid-19 was mentioned on a death certificate, even if the disease was only suspected.
The highest number of Covid-19 deaths were among those aged 85 years and over.
As well as recording the total number of deaths caused by the coronavirus, the ONS has also published data from the UK’s Care Quality Commission (CQC), a body which regulates health and adult social care services in England.
The commission was notified of 4,343 coronavirus-related deaths in care homes in England between April 10 and April 24. The information has been released as concerns mount over outbreaks in these homes.
This story has been updated to correct the number of coronavirus-linked deaths reported by the ONS.