UK to Stop Counting Homeless Deaths

An official count of the deaths of homeless people would no longer be published in England and Wales under proposals to increase the efficiency of health data that campaigners have called “callous”.

In a move that advocates for homeless people fear will increase the invisibility of the most vulnerable and amount to sweeping the problem under the rug, the Office for National Statistics is consulting on dropping the annual bulletin, which showed an estimated 741 deaths among homeless people in 2021.

The ONS will continue to collect the data on the deaths of homeless people, but will include it in overall mortality figures rather than publishing it separately. It said the data, which has been published since 2018, was experimental and amounted to an estimate.

The plan is included in a series of proposed changes to official figures that the ONS says will provide “an improved and more efficient health and social care statistical landscape”.

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