A leaked letter seen by the BBC has set out the widespread problems the care sector is having coping with the coronavirus pandemic. According to the document – which was sent to the Department of Health and Social Care by the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services – care homes are concerned about funding, testing, and the availability of personal protective equipment (PPE). The distribution of PPE is described as “paltry” and “shambolic”, with the letter also accusing ministers of sending contradictory messages on the shielding scheme for people particularly at risk from the illness. A spokesperson for the Department of Health said the government has a “comprehensive action plan to support the adult social care sector” in England.
The BBC’s Reality Check has been looking into the situation with care homes – where according to Office for National Statistics figures just over 5% of the coronavirus deaths in England and Wales up to the week ending 3 April had occurred.