Data showing the Scots care home providers which recorded the highest and lowest Covid-related death rates has been published.

It follows a review by the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner which found that the figures, gathered by the Care Inspectorate and submitted to it by care providers can lawfully be published. 

The care watchdog was notified about 3774 Covid-related deaths from March 16 2020 to March 21 2021 in all care homes and 3761 of those who died were elderly. Glasgow had the highest death toll at 537, followed by Edinburgh (385) South Lanarkshire (291) Renfrewshire (214) and North Lanarkshire at 213.

However, Midlothian recorded the highest death rate, with more than 18 deaths per 100 care homes places, followed by Lothian and Clackmannashire, which had 16.

There were no notifications of Covid-related deaths from care homes in Orkney. 

The highest number of deaths were recorded in the first few months of the pandemic from March to June 2020, when 2140 elderly or older adults died in homes, compared to 727 during the second wave of the pandemic, from January to March 2021.

HeraldScotland:

Erskine care home recorded the highest number of Covid-related deaths at 33, while 31 elderly people died at Darnley Court home in Glasgow, run by HC-One.

HC-One ltd, which runs 42 Scottish homes, was the provider with the highest number of Covid-related deaths at 338 while associate company HC-One Oval Ltd (14 homes) had 214. 

It was followed by Advinia Homes, which has 11 homes and recorded 198 deaths and Barchester Healthcare, which had 132.

Care UK Limited had 77 deaths at six homes while homes run by Glasgow City Council had 68 Covid-related deaths at five homes.

Nicola Sturgeon has admitted that older people may have died as a result of the government’s decision to discharge them from hospitals into care homes as it readied the NHS for coronavirus patients.

The Care Inspectorate said there were links between number of deaths related to Covid-19 and size of service and geographical location. Bigger care homes were more likely to have a higher number of cases and those in the private sector were also more at risk.

There were 2.1 virus deaths per 100 places in care homes with up to 20 beds.

This contrasts with 12.6 deaths per 100 places in facilities with more than 80 beds.

Of those care homes for older people provided by the private sector, 60.8% reported at least one such death, compared with 57.1% provided by the voluntary sector and 50.8% by the public sector.

HeraldScotland:

Almost 60% of homes reported at least one Covid-related death.

The Care Inspectorate disclosure comes after the information commissioner ruled that National Records of Scotland (NRS) breached FOI rules by refusing to reveal how many people had died of Covid in each of the country's care homes.

NRS had failed to release the data for eight months in response to media requests.

Care homes and providers which recorded no Covid-related deaths over the course of the pandemic included; Inspire (Partnership through Life) which has 13 homes, Leonard Cheshire Disability and NHS Highland, which runs 15 homes.

Renfrewshire Council had 15 deaths at six homes while Sancturary Care recorded an average of one death at each of its 10 homes.

Tamaris Scotland (Ltd) had 21 deaths in total at its three care homes.

In just over half of local authority areas (18 out of 32), care homes experienced the majority of deaths during the first wave. Of the remainder, eight were spread more evenly across the two waves and five had the majority of cases reported in the second wave.

A spokesman for the Care Inspectorate said: “We are acutely aware of the potential distress and possible harm that publication of some information may cause. 

"Therefore, it is very important that data relating to deaths is considered in context to have a fuller understanding of the impact of the virus in care settings. 

"Following a decision by the Information Commissioner and after internal review, the data has now been published. 

“We know from our inspections and our experience of the pandemic that the relationship between the quality of care experienced by people in care homes, and the impact of Covid-19 is complex. 

“We know that any care service can be affected by COVID-19 and that residents of care homes were tragically particularly vulnerable to the virus. We also know that the quality of care experienced by residents did not necessarily provide an indicator of the risks in relation to the virus. 

“Our findings relating to care homes indicate there may be relationships between a high number of deaths related to COVID-19 and size of service and geographical location, including urban or rural settings. 

“We continue to undertake analysis to help us better understand what we can learn from these findings to support quality improvement within the care sector."