Almost 20,000 care home residents have died with coronavirus, the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed.
Analysis by the ONS also concluded that care homes that don't pay their staff sick pay and use agency staff are more likely to have cases of coronavirus in residents.
Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran, who is campaigning for an urgent inquiry into the government's handling of coronavirus, said the figures show urgent reforms are needed to the social care system ahead of a potential second wave.
Since the beginning of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic (between the period 2 March to 12 June 2020, registered up to 20 June 2020), there were 66,112 deaths of care home residents (wherever the death occurred); of these, 19,394 involved COVID-19, which is 29.3% of all deaths of care home residents (Office for National Statistics).
Layla commented: "These latest figures are a badge of shame for this government. "The fact that care homes where staff do not receive sick pay have seen higher numbers of coronavirus cases is deeply concerning and shows urgent reforms are needed.
"We must ensure every care worker receives full sick pay if they need to self-isolate because of coronavirus. Those on the frontline should not suffer financial hardship for doing the right thing.
"We also need an urgent, cross-party and independent inquiry into what went wrong so other lessons can be learned ahead of a potential second wave."
A cross-party parliamentary group is being set up in support of an urgent independent inquiry into the Government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis. Chaired by Liberal Democrat MP Layla Moran - other officers and members include Conservative MP Dr Dan Poulter, Labour MP Clive Lewis, Scottish National Party MP Dr Philippa Whitford, Plaid Cymru MP Liz Saville-Roberts, Green Party MP Caroline Lucas and Green Party Life Peer Jenny Jones.
The APPG is being set up by campaign group March for Change, which has been calling for a public inquiry into the UK’s response since April.