On 4 September, Public Health Wales published their study into COVID-19-related deaths in Wales amongst people with a learning disability
Between March and May 2020, 31 people with a learning disability died from coronavirus (COVID-19). Public Health Wales believe this is about 20 to 26 more deaths than they would find in 15,000 people without a learning disability.
But people with a learning disability generally die earlier and more often from many other causes, not just coronavirus (COVID-19).
This means that the extra risk of dying from coronavirus is similar for people with and without a learning disability.
The study identified 15,000 people with a learning disability who were either resident in Wales or registered with a Welsh GP in February 2020. Those identified were likely to be individuals with relatively severe learning disabilities and those with relatively poor physical health statuses.
Sharon Williams Learning Disabilities Programme Manager within Improvement Cymru said
‘People with learning disabilities are often subject to more health inequalities than the wider population. They are often more vulnerable to a wider variety of health issues, including acute respiratory illnesses and consequently, this group may be particularly vulnerable to COVID-19.’
The report is available and in easy read: