Latest figures published today by NISRA show that four deaths involving Covid-19 occurred in the last week, from September 26 to October 2. The total Covid-19 related deaths figure stands at 906.

Of this total, 488 (53.9 per cent) took place in hospital, 356 (39.3 per cent) in care homes, eight (0.9 per cent) in hospices and 54 (6 per cent) at residential addresses or other locations. The 364 deaths which occurred in care homes and hospices involved 85 separate establishments.

The comparative number of deaths reported daily by the Department of Health to October 2 was 583. These figures are based on patients having previously tested positive for the virus, whereas the NISRA figures are based on the information entered on death certificates, completed by medical professionals. They may or may not have previously tested positive for the virus.

Further analysis, which includes deaths of care home residents in hospital, shows that of the 437 deaths of care home residents involving Covid-19 in the year to date to October 2 2020, 81.5 per cent (356) occurred in a care home, with the remaining 81 occurring in hospital. On this basis, deaths of care home residents account for 48.2 per cent of all Covid-19 related deaths; however, no assumptions can be made in relation to where or when the deceased contracted the disease.

Separate analyses based on the date of death registration, shows that the provisional number of total deaths from all causes registered in Northern Ireland in the week ending October 2 2020 (week 39) was 328, 5 more than in week 38 and 42 more than the 5-year average of 286. Over the last 27 weeks in total, 1,258 ‘excess deaths’ (deaths above the average for the corresponding period in previous years) have been registered in Northern Ireland, with the number of ‘excess deaths’ in the year to date to 2nd October totalling 999.

Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate of two (0.6 per cent) of the 328 deaths registered in week 39. This is seven less than last week (week 38) and brings the total number of Covid-19 related deaths registered in the calendar year up to October 2 to 902.

Persons aged 75 and over accounted for two-thirds (64.6 per cent) of all deaths and 79 per cent of Covid‑19 related deaths registered this calendar year up to October 2.