Calls for inquiry into rising death rates in England and Wales

nhs trusts medical errors report

There are calls for an inquiry into rising death rates in England and Wales. According to recent research, there has been an additional 20,000 deaths at the start of 2018 that have gone without explanation.

In the midst of what many are still calling an NHS crisis over funding and staffing issues, the news of rising death rates doesn’t bode well.

The authors of the research are asking for an urgent investigation to explain why there has been a rise in death rates at the start of this year. According to the research, there doesn’t appear to be an obvious explanation for the deaths.

Research findings into rising death rates in England and Wales

The findings into rising death rates in England and Wales indicated that there were 10,000 ‘additional deaths’ in the first seven weeks of 2018. However, information from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that there were over 20,000 more deaths in England and Wales in the first four months of 2018.

This equated to an ‘additional death’ every eight minutes in the first four months of 2018; an almost 12pc increase.

The rising death rates figures were compared to those from the previous five years, and the research has concluded that there’s no suggestion that viruses or the weather are the cause of the problem.

Why are we seeing rising death rates?

There could be a number of reasons, but the most concerning one that comes to mind is any link to the quality of the health services on offer.

As we often say, we (and I’m sure many others) admire the hard work our NHS staff do, especially when they have to work under such increasingly difficult conditions; but, it’s no secret that funding problems are taking a toll. If the rising death rates in England and Wales are linked to the quality of care available, something has to be done immediately.

We cannot have a situation where patients are dying because of a lack of quality healthcare on offer.

We will continue to monitor this story. With the recent coverage of cancer funding struggles and the NHS Breast Cancer Screening scandal, we cannot ignore the possibility that healthcare funding has a part to play in the rising death rates.

IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.

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