The coronavirus pandemic has created many challenges to the healthcare system across England and in London in particular. Coronavirus arrived in the UK in January 2020 and a national lockdown was in place between the end of March and end of June, with partial restrictions in place afterwards. The death rate in London hospitals was at its peak in April before receding and starting to rise again in September.
We have provided the overall number of deaths per month below and the deaths per trust (March – present) below that. This is intended to give people working in general practice an indication of the mortality rate from Coronavirus in their area, rather than an indication of hospital performance or measure of comparison between trusts. We appreciate that our hospital colleagues have been working as hard as everyone else involved in the Coronavirus response, while exposed to substantial risk and facing a unique set of challenges within each trust they work in.
|Month||Deaths of Covid positive patients in London hospitals|
|November (partial to 20 Nov)||298|
|Hospital trust||Total deaths|
|London North West University Healthcare Trust||660|
|St Georges University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust||311|
|Barts Health NHS Trust||723|
|University College London Hospitals Foundation Trust||182|
|Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Trust||636|
|Imperial College Healthcare Foundation Trust||456|
|Croydon Health Services Trust||320|
|The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust||178|
|Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust||171|
|Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust||442|
|Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust||519|
|Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust||321|
|North East London NHS Foundation Trust||49|
|Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust||356|
|Homerton Hospital University Foundation Trust||159|
|NHS Nightingale Hospital London||4|
|North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust||290|
|Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust||245|
|King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust||534|
|Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust||10|
|Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust||7|
|Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare NHS Trust||1|
|East London NHS Foundation Trust||17|
|Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust||51|
|The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust||19|
|West London NHS Trust||4|
|Whittington Health NHS Trust||119|
At the start of the pandemic many Trusts, particularly in North London, faced severe capacity issues along with delays in non covid related treatment. On 20 April London North West University Healthcare Trust announced that they had the fourth highest rate of bed occupancy in England due to Covid and Northwick Park Hospital declared a ‘critical incident’, sending messages to staff about contacting neighbouring hospitals to transfer patients who needed critical care. Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust in north London had to stop all non-Covid-19 treatments and referrals for up to two weeks as they became overwhelmed with Covid-19 patients. Homerton Hospital in north east London announced that Hackney saw the highest two-week rise in Covid-19 cases in London from 9-22 July.
Prior to the launch of the national testing system numerous hospital trusts conducted their own testing procedures and some research projects about the virus. In early May, St George’s University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust announced that they were in the process of conducting a major research campaign into Covid-19. Following on from this, in June St Georges researchers developed a Coronavirus antibody test to be used on cancer patients, to see how coronavirus was affecting them and how long it takes for the virus to clear. Imperial College Healthcare Foundation Trust similarly conducted and funded projects into how the virus affects the body. On 28 September, the public were invited to take part in the Novavax Covid-19 vaccination study at the Royal Free Hospital which involved volunteers taking two vaccine doses administered three weeks apart.
In recent months there are a number of reasons which could explain why there was a decline in the number of deaths in London. At the start of the pandemic, London was disproportionately affected and incurred more deaths when compared to the rest of the country. The second lockdown however saw the North of England bear the brunt of infection rates and hospitalisation.
Last updated : 25 Nov 2020