People die every day from starvation in care homes and hospitals, ONS says

BERLIN, GERMANY - MARCH 11:  Day guest Helga covered her face with her hands the middle of the room in the geriatric day care facility of the German Red Cross (DRK, or Deutsches Rotes Kreuz) at Villa Albrecht on March 11, 2013 in Berlin, Germany.  A great number of senior Citzens struggle with various forms of dementia at Villa Albrecht.  The German Red Cross dates its origin back to 1863 with the founding of the Wuerttembergischer Sanitaetsverein, a medical association that provided care to wounded soldiers. Today the German Red Cross has four million members nationwide and is active in international aid and social care.  (Photo by Carsten Koall/Getty Images)

At least two people die every day from starvation or thirst in care homes and hospitals, according to Office for National (ONS) statistics.

Analysis of ONS figures by The Sun revealed that 54 people died from malnutrition in care homes in 2015. A further 76 people died from dehydration.

Caroline Abrahams, from Age UK said: “It’s horrifying to think that older people are dying because they haven’t had enough to eat or drink in care homes and hospitals.

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“If malnutrition is left untreated it has serious consequences, as these new figures show.

“It is incredibly important that doctors, nurses and care workers spot the warning signs early and make sure older people get help.

“They need training to identify older people who are at risk and the skills to ensure older people get all the food and liquid they require. This may mean sitting with them to help them eat and drink.

“The government has an important role in making sure the funding is in place to support good quality care. Our worry is these figures are another sign that our system for caring for older people is failing.”

Inspections revealed 312 care homes were failing to adequately feed and hydrate residents between January 2015 and November 2016. That accounts for one in 50 care homes, looking after 11,500 people.

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