420 PIOs have died of Covid-19 in Britain, NHS data reveals – Times of India


LONDON: At least 420 Indian-origin people have died in Britain from Covid-19 — the largest of any ethnic minority — new data released by the NHS has revealed.
After extensive concerns were raised about the number of BAME deaths, the NHS has released a breakdown of deaths by ethnicity in hospitals in England where the patients tested positive for Covid-19 at the time of death.
It showed that of 13,918 total deaths up to 17 April 2020, 10.244 or 74% were white and 2,252 or 16% were BAME. For the remaining 10% of deaths, there is no ethnic information known.
Of the BAME groups, there have been 420 deaths of people of Indian ethnicity, the highest of any non-white ethnic group, making up 3% of the total number of UK deaths. This is followed by 407 Black Caribbean deaths (3%), 287 Pakistani (2%), 263 African (2%), 217 other Asian background (2%), 131 other Black group (1%) , 89 Bangladeshi (1%), 50 Chinese (0%) and 388 from any other ethnic group (3%).
At the 2011 census, 86% of the population was white and 2.5% were of Indian ethnicity, whilst the Black Caribbean made up 1.1%.
Ramesh Mehta, president of the British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (BAPIO), said: “These figures on Indian ethnic deaths are alarming. The government should have taken more precautionary steps because it is known that comorbidities are an important factor in the seriousness of Covid-19 infection and comorbidities like heart disease, obesity and diabetes are high amongst the Indian population compared to the white population.” He said an added factor may be that Indians tend to live in extended families and congested areas making social distancing difficult. A review of BAME Covid deaths is taking place.
Ashish Popat, spokesman for British Indian Voice, said: “Awareness came late and it is very difficult to socially distance and self-isolate within a multi-generational household, especially as the elders need help. Most Indians live in extended families and elderly PIOs live with young people who may have been asymptomatic. Indians tend to live in clusters where it may have spread and many work in key worker roles such as in the NHS, at Heathrow and as pharmacists.”
The ethnicity breakdown of all deaths (where known) which is reported on the NHS England website and will now be updated weekly here.
It was published 21 April but is for all deaths up to 17 April.


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