MPS have hit back at the Prime Minister after he appeared to blame care home staff for coronavirus outbreaks.

During a visit to East Yorkshire on Monday, Boris Johnson claimed “too many care homes didn’t really follow the procedures”.

Almost 30,000 more care home residents in England and Wales died during the coronavirus outbreak than during the same period in 2019, ONS figures show.

Peter Kyle, Labour MP for Hove and Portslade, said: “To see Boris Johnson victim-blame care home workers breaks my heart.

The Argus:

“Some gave their lives by continuing to serve residents despite the PPE and testing he promised not arriving.

“More than 16,000 people dead and he blames the people who cared for them? Shocking even by his standard.”

Caroline Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: “This is utterly shameless.

“The Prime Minister has already tried to shift blame for his disastrous handling of Covid to scientists. Now it’s care homes.

The Argus:

“He needs to accept that responsibility for the UK’s high infection and death rate rests solely with him.”

The UK’s coronavirus death toll has passed more than 44,000, according to the latest Government figures.

Mr Johnson’s comments have been branded “clumsy and cowardly” by a sector leader.

Mark Adams, chief executive of the charity Community Integrated Care, said he was “unbelievably disappointed” to hear the Prime Minister blaming care workers.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I think this – at best – was clumsy and cowardly, but, to be honest with you, if this is genuinely his view, I think we’re almost entering a Kafkaesque alternative reality where the Government set the rules, we follow them, they don’t like the results and they then deny setting the rules and blame the people that were trying to do their best.”

The PM’s comments came after he was asked what he made of NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens’ desire to see plans to adequately fund the adult social care sector within a year.

Mr Johnson said: “One of the things the crisis has shown is we need to think about how we organise our social care package better and how we make sure we look after people better who are in social care. We discovered too many care homes didn’t really follow the procedures in the way that they could have but we’re learning lessons the whole time.”