The Civil Registration of Deaths, ONS dataset comprises mortality information for all deaths in England. Deaths certification and registration is a legal requirement in the UK and a doctor who has seen the deceased during the last 14 days of life must complete a medical certificate of causes of death (MCCD) within 5 days unless a post-mortem examination or inquest is organized. During the COVID-19 pandemic, emergency guidance enabled any doctor in the UK (not just the attending) to complete the medical certificate of cause of death, the duration of time over which the deceased was not seen before referral to the coroner was extended from 14 to 28 days and causes of death could be ‘to the best of their knowledge and belief’ without diagnostic proof, if appropriate and to avoid delay. ICD-10 codes, corresponding to the principal and contributory causes of death on the MCCD, were used to identify deaths from heart failure. Individual patient data from the NHFA were linked using each patient’s unique NHS identification number to the ONS dataset to track mortality for 30 days from hospital discharge; this also allowed mortality within 30 days of admission to be calculated. We also collected ONS data for all adult deaths in England. We reported daily deaths for heart failure recorded in the primary position and in any position.

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