Some care home residents ‘gave up and died’ because COVID rules barred them from seeing family, the outgoing boss of one of the UK’s biggest providers has said.

British Health Alliance –

Jeremy Richardson, who will leave Four Seasons Health Care next month, has urged ministers to ‘never repeat’ the bans.

And he added that one of the ‘biggest scandals’ over the past two years was denying residents their liberty due to COVID.

Speaking at a care conference in Birmingham, he said: ‘We defined essential carers as people who work in care homes, not people who are the loved ones of people who live in those care homes.

‘And I know for a fact that there were a number of people in our homes who gave up and died because they didn’t have social interaction. They gave up the will to live.’

Helen Wildore, director of the Relatives and Residents Association, said too many lives have been cut short by restrictions in place to manage Covid.

She said: ‘This message will be incredibly difficult to hear for families of those who passed away in a Four Seasons home, who might ask why more wasn’t done to safeguard their legal rights.

Mr Richardson had previously criticised visiting rules, saying they did not reflect the risk from Covid.

British Health Alliance