MORE than a quarter of the deaths in Worcestershire's care homes this year have been from Covid, the latest figures show.

A total of 581 residents have died in the county's care homes since the start of the year with 143 of those deaths mentioning Covid on the death certificate.

The number of resident deaths in care homes increased by seven per cent from 2019 to 2020, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

As many as 1,935 people in care homes in Worcestershire died in 2020, 239 of which were from Covid - around 12 per cent of deaths.

This increased from a total of 1,805 resident deaths in care homes in the county in 2019.

A total of 382 people have died from Covid across care homes in Worcestershire since the coronavirus pandemic began.

An outbreak at Perry Manor Care Home in Worcester earlier this year saw 15 residents die in a 'few weeks' from coronavirus.

A total of 33 members of staff at the home in Charles Hastings Way also tested positive for the virus during the outbreak.

Three residents died at the city's St Stephen's Care Home in Droitwich Road in November last year after an outbreak which affected 56 people including 33 residents and 18 staff.

Rule changes which come into effect from next Monday (May 17) will allow care home residents to have five named visitors - an increase from two - and will no longer have to self-isolate for 14 days after leaving the home to attend medical appointments.

The most deaths have occurred in Bromsgrove with 83 care home residents dying from Covid.

A total of 78 people in Wychavon's care homes have died from Covid and 73 people in Worcester have died from Covid.

As many as 53 care home residents in Malvern Hills Have died from Covid and 68 people in Wyre Forest's care homes have died.

Figures show a total of 27 people in Redditch's care homes have died from Covid.

The majority of Covid deaths in Worcestershire have occurred in the county's hospitals with 869 people dying in hospital from the virus - more than 64 per cent of the total 1,353 deaths.