The Continuous Mortality Investigation (CMI) based on provisional England & Wales deaths data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that there were 2.4 times as many deaths registered in week 16 of 2020 than same period last year.

These ‘excess’ deaths in week 16 were 1.5 times the number of registered deaths where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. It added there may have been around 45,000 more deaths in the UK for the year to 27 April 2020 than if mortality rates were similar to those experienced in 2019.

Cobus Daneel, Chair of the CMI Mortality Projections Committee said: “Our ongoing analysis suggests that the true impact of the coronavirus pandemic is roughly double that of commonly-quoted figures for deaths in hospitals. This not only shows that a large number of Covid 19 deaths are occurring outside hospitals, but also suggest that there are significant knock-on effects not directly attributable to Covid-19.”

The latest ONS figures contain the most up to date data on care home deaths in England based on data reported from care home operators to the Care Quality Commission.

Main ONS findings

The provisional number of deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending 17 April 2020 (Week 16) was 22,351; this represents an increase of 3,835 deaths registered compared with the previous week (Week 15) and 11,854 more than the five-year average; this is the highest weekly total recorded since comparable figures begin in 1993.

Of the deaths registered in Week 16, 8,758 mentioned “novel coronavirus (Covid-19)”, which is 39.2% of all deaths; this compares with 6,213 (33.6% of all deaths) in Week 15.

In London, over half (55.5%) of deaths registered in Week 16 involved Covid-19; the North West and North East also had a high proportion of Covid-19 deaths, accounting for 42.3% and 41.1% respectively of deaths registered in these regions.

Of deaths involving Covid-19 registered up to Week 16, 77.4% (14,796 deaths) occurred in hospital with the remainder occurring in care homes, private homes and hospices. The number of overall deaths in care homes for Week 16 was 7,316; this is 2,389 higher than Week 15, almost double the number in Week 14 and almost triple the number in Week 13.

Continuous Mortality Investigation Limited (‘the CMI’) is wholly owned by the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries but has an independent executive and management.