The care home death toll from Covid-19 could be thousands higher than government figures have shown in England, according to reports.

In figures published last month, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said there were 39,017 Covid-related deaths in England’s care homes.

But it has been claimed the data excludes key dates when patients were discharged from hospitals without Covid tests.

Care home providers told The Telegraph the figure could be thousands higher than the official number because only people who died with Covid between April 10, 2020, and March 31 this year were included.

They say thousands of care home residents could have died in the days leading up to April 10, alleging that a government policy meant patients with Covid were being discharged from hospitals into care homes.

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