Weekly deaths involving Covid-19 in Scotland fall to 230

It marks the fourth consecutive weekly drop in coronavirus-related deaths in the country.

The number of deaths involving coronavirus last week was 230, a fall of more than 100 on the week before.

It marks the fourth consecutive week where deaths relating to Covid-19 have declined, while the proportion of deaths in care homes has also fallen back.

A total of 3779 Scots have now died with confirmed or suspected cases of the virus since the pandemic began, the National Records of Scotland (NRS) figures show.

And speaking on Wednesday, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed 13 more people who tested positive for the virus have died.

The NRS’ weekly statistics, which count confirmed and suspected Covid-19 cases, reveal 230 deaths where coronavirus was cited on the death certificate registered in the week ending May 24.

That’s a fall of 105 from the 335 deaths reported the week before, and down from a peak of 659 in mid-April.

Weekly deaths at lowest level since March. (Chart: STV News - Source: National Records of Scotland)

But including 34 confirmed Covid-19 deaths recorded by Health Protection Scotland and the Scottish Government so far this week, the total death toll in Scotland is 3813.

Speaking at First Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, Sturgeon also said confirmed cases of the virus had risen by 55 overnight, to 15,240 since the pandemic began.

There are 1247 people in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 overall, a rise of 47.

Of these patients, 38 were in intensive care, a rise of three.

Deaths involving Covid-19 as a proportion of all deaths last week dropped to 19% from a high in that same week in April of 36%, the NRS figures show.

The percentage of coronavirus deaths in care homes has risen over the course of the pandemic to more than half but has dropped back in recent weeks.

Last week, care home deaths were 54% of all Covid-19 deaths, a decrease from 56% the week before and down from the peak of 60% two weeks prior.

The number of actual deaths in care homes fell for a fourth straight week, this week by around a third, with 124 deaths – a drop of 62.

Since the pandemic began, 46% of deaths have occurred in care homes, 47% in hospitals and 7% in home or other settings.

Three quarters (76%) of all deaths involving coronavirus to date were of people aged 75 or over.

The total number of deaths registered in Scotland from May 18 to May 24 was 1223 – 17% higher than the average number of deaths registered in the same week over the last five year.

Since the peak of 878 excess deaths reported in the second week of April, the number of excess deaths has decreased on a weekly basis, to 178 in the week ending May 24.

There were fewer deaths last week from respiratory diseases, circulatory conditions, dementia and Alzheimer’s compared to the average for this time of year. 

That means, for the first time since the pandemic took hold, the number of deaths where Covid-19 was the underlying cause (212 in total) was greater than the total number of excess deaths for this time of year.

Pete Whitehouse, NRS director of statistical services, said: “Every death from this virus is a tragedy.

“These statistics, alongside the other important evidence being made available by the Scottish Government and Health Protection Scotland (HPS), are valuable to the understanding of the progress and impact of the Covid-19 virus across Scotland.”

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