UK’s quiet crisis of surging excess deaths is just the tip of the iceberg



Britain is A new silent health crisis.

An average of about 1,000 people have died each week in England and Wales for 14 of the last 15 weeks. None are due to Covid.

Excess non-Covid deaths to come soon if current trajectory continues surpass virus deaths This year, it’s even deadlier than the Omicron wave.

So what is going on? Experts believe that decisions made by governments in the early stages of the pandemic could be affected again now.

policies to keep people indoors, scared them away from the hospital And they are deprived of care, ultimately sacrificing primary care.

Professor Robert Dingwall of Nottingham Trent University, a former government adviser during the pandemic, said:

“We are starting to see deaths from infectious diseases. Delayed and deferred treatment of other conditionsfrom those related to poverty and deprivation, such as cancer and heart disease.

“They progress more slowly. If the cancer isn’t treated quickly, the patient won’t die right away, but more patients will die sooner than they would otherwise.”

The government believes that the majority of excess deaths Circulatory problems and diabetes – Long-term chronic illness that can be fatal without proper care.

The situation may also have been exacerbated by lockdowns and work-from-home orders that have increased sedentary lifestyles and alcohol consumption during a time the UK was already facing. Historic levels of obesity and heart disease.

Dr. Charles Levison, Chief Executive Officer of Doctorcall, a private GP service, said: It caused permanent damage.

“With a full government investigation, the time has come for a proper public debate on this matter.”

The latest fallout has never hit the worst of times as the NHS struggles to contain it. Pandemic treatment backlog And we failed to achieve our goals across the board.

Figures released last week showed a record 29,317 patients were forced to endure 12-hour standby for accidents and emergencies In July, it rose by one-third in one month.

of 12 hour A&E wait count was up 33% in July, jumping to 7,283 from 22,034 the previous month. Before the pandemic, the figure for the same month was just 450.

The latest numbers are heart attack or UK stroke patients We waited over 30 minutes longer for an ambulance to arrive in July than we did pre-pandemic.

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, chief executive of the British Heart Foundation, said: “Today, too many people with heart disease are waiting dangerously long for potentially life-saving heart treatments. .

“Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, and seeing a doctor on time can mean the difference between life and death.”

There is growing frustration among medical professionals that little effort has been made to highlight the problem of excess mortality. At a time when the same number of people were dying from Covid each week, there were calls for greater restrictions.

Professor Carl Hennegan, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University, said excess deaths began to rise significantly around the end of April.

“The signals in the data suggest that something is not quite right,” he said. “The sustained rise in deaths requires the initiation of investigations involving access to raw death certificate data, random samples of medical records, or analysis of autopsies.

“I feel like there’s a lack of clarity at the moment. When it comes to people’s health and well-being, we can’t wait. It’s unacceptable.”

A huge number of excess deaths appear to be occurring at home, with the latest release by the National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday recording 681, 28.1% more than would normally be expected.

Some experts believe the excess deaths may be people whose health has been compromised by Covid infections, which are known to increase the risk of stroke and heart attack.

Research shows that people who have recovered from Covid infection Increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Dr Adam Jacobs, senior director of biostatistics at Premier Research, said: “Just allowing millions of people to become infected could have increased deaths from cardiovascular disease as an indirect effect of Covid. There is certainly.”

However, some believe the excessive death toll is likely a mixed response to government policy. Restrictions to fight viruses.

Dr. Tom Jefferson, also from the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine, added: Due to pandemic restrictions.

“High alcohol and food intake, not getting enough exercise, stress, and not getting treatment can all lead to a stroke or heart attack.

This week, the Department of Health and Human Services finally acknowledged its concerns about the numbers. The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities analyzes excess mortality.

The government understands that the combination of long delays for ambulances and emergency care is compounded by concerns for people neglect regular checks Treatment due to Covid response is behind the increase.

A Department of Health and Human Services spokeswoman said: “Analysis is ongoing, but early research suggests that cardiovascular disease and diabetes may be responsible for the majority of excess deaths. .

“The latest data underscore the importance of proactively managing risks related to heart disease, as there is ample evidence that many of these deaths are potentially preventable.”

Getting to the bottom of what’s behind the rise can be difficult, but essential to understanding the true and lasting impact of policies to combat Covid.

At this point, most of the excess deaths appear to be related to heart disease and diabetes, but it’s only a matter of time before people start dying from conditions such as cancer that are left without long-term treatment. It’s a problem.

In July 2020, a government report warned of lockdowns. 200,000 could die due to medical delays. At the time, these findings were largely ignored as governments were urged to push ahead with restrictions.

If that report is true, the current excess death toll is just the tip of the iceberg. Sadly, we didn’t see much of that iceberg before we hit it.