MORE than £5 million is being handed over to help cover the cost of measures to limit the spread of coronavirus in Cheshire East’s care homes.

The Government is providing £5,320,292 for the 4,110 care home beds registered across the borough, which includes Knutsford, Wilmslow and Middlewich.

It is part of a new infection control fund which will go towards the cost of staff training on infection control, measures to reduce workforce movements and stepping up NHS clinical support for care homes.

A new wellbeing package for social care staff us also being rolled out, including two new helplines led by the Samaritans and Hospice UK.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “From the very start of this outbreak, we have been working to protect our brilliant social care workforce and the most vulnerable in our society.

“Our package sets out clearly the extra steps local councils and care homes should be taking as we stamp out the spread of this virus.”

However, some experts are warning that action to stop the spread of coronavirus in care homes has come too late.

It comes as Cheshire East Council had registered 142 deaths from Covid-19 at care homes in the borough by May 16.

Dr Jennifer Dixon, chief executive of the Health Foundation, said: "While no action plan could undo decades of political neglect, questions should be asked as to how many deaths could have been prevented had action been taken earlier."