Based on fieldwork on 9th and 10th
September with 146 Scots adults (no 16/17-year-olds) and within a larger poll
of 1 619 showing a Labour and Brexit increase
over the previous poll on 5th and 6th:
YouGov has been
the most frequent pollster on Westminster with 20 since the beginning of June including
this one. They have consistently, 15 out of 20 times, scored the SNP at 4% of
the total poll and averaging 4.1%. This puts them slightly below Opinium at 4.33% but well above ComRes at 3.1%
The Labour score of 8% when they seem to be climbing
nationally is disastrous.
no breakdown of Scottish figures. When I ask for one, I get either ignored or I’m
told ‘the Scottish sample is too small to
be significant so we’re not telling you.’
there is a bit of news of interest to us if not to Reporting Scotland:
Across the UK, only around 60% of people
invited to take part in bowel screening do so. A new screening test called the
faecal immunochemical test (FIT) is
already in place in Scotland and is rolling out in Wales and England in
2019, and Northern Ireland have pledged to introduce FIT screening in 2020.
However, for cost reasons, NHS England
plan a less effective test:
Wales and England are planning on rolling out
at a threshold of 150ug/g and 120ug/g respectively. A lower threshold is more sensitive and will detect more cases of cancer
and advanced adenomas (pre-cancerous growths) but requires more colonoscopies
and an increased demand for pathology.
introduction of FIT has been shown to improve uptake in Scotland, particularly
in groups with low participation. Similar increases will be expected
once the test is rolled out in England and Wales. It will be important to
monitor inequalities and continue to remove barriers to participation.
any Scottish journalists reading this, the Scottish data is:
show that from November 2017 to April 2018, 64% of those eligible returned
their FIT. In the same period the year before, uptake of the old test (the
Faecal Occult Blood Test) was 56%. The biggest
improvement in participation with FIT has been amongst those living in the most
deprived areas – up from 42.0% to 51.8%.
the NHS Scotland Information Services
The number of new patients referred to Chronic
Pain clinics has increased [3%]. Between 01 April 2019 and 30 June 2019, there
were 5,424 new patients referred to a pain clinic, compared to 5,249 referrals
in the previous quarter.
Of the 2,961 patients who attended (were seen)
for their first appointment, 1,927 (65.1%) attended within 18 weeks of
referral. This compares with 63.8% the previous quarter.
Though many of us have a healthy skepticism about opinion
polls and recognise the limitations in interpreting Scottish sub-poll samples
of between 90 and 180 respondents, the results of a series by the same pollster
can still be suggestive of real distribution in intended voting behaviour.
So, when a pollster repeatedly diverges significantly from
the others, we can reasonably suspect that there is something in their sampling
or other methods causing that. From 1st June 2019 until last week and
ignoring those with only one poll in that period, we get:
As five pollsters cluster around 4% of the full sample and thus greater than 40% SNP support in their Scottish sub-poll, ComRes and BMG are clear outliers. Not only are their averages notably lower but they repeatedly record support at 3% when this is a rare result for the other five pollsters. The non-inclusion of 16 and 17-year-olds may be keeping the scores down but, as far as I am aware, all of them do that. I can’t tell easily whether ComRes and BMG have a sample skewed toward the older respondents known to be less supportive of the SNP but that might do it.
ComRes has attracted criticism recently. See this from the Independent in June::
Predictions of a Margaret Thatcher-style landslide for the Tories under Boris Johnson has prompted a row among data experts. The new poll, conducted by ComRes for the Daily Telegraph, said Mr Johnson was the only leadership contender who could offer victory for the Tories in a general election, translating to a majority of 140 seats……Analysis by Electoral Calculus, a separate firm, translated this support into a 140-seat majority if Mr Johnson was prime minister – only four less than the party won under Mrs Thatcher in 1983…..However several experts cast doubt on the interpretation of the figures, with one saying it was “bonkers” to project national opinion polls onto constituency results during such political uncertainty.
ComRes also hit headlines earlier suggesting that Labour’s anti-semitism problem was a big electoral threat.
I welcome comments from readers of a psephological bent, or anyone, really.
benefit to help people on low incomes pay for the costs of a funeral will be
available from next week, the Scottish Government has announced. The funeral
support payment launches on 16 September and has three elements: burial or
cremation costs; a flat rate £700 toward expenses including funeral director
fees, coffin and flowers; and some transport costs. It will be available for
recipients of universal credit, income support, income-based jobseeker’s
allowance, pension credit, housing benefit, child tax credit and disability or
severe disability elements of the working tax credit.
A major United Nations climate change summit will take place in Glasgow.Up to 30,000
delegates are expected to attend the event at Glasgow’s Scottish Events Campus
(SEC) at the end of next year. Glasgow will host the
main COP summit while Italy will host preparatory events and a significant
youth event, as part of the agreement. The conference has been
described as the most important
gathering on climate change since the Paris agreement was signed in 2015. Lasting for two weeks, it would be the largest summit the UK has ever hosted,
with up to 200 world leaders expected to attend for the final weekend. 2020’s conference is seen as a major crossroads in the
battle against global climate change. It will likely be held just after the
next US presidential election.
This trend suggests improved treatment
of what can be difficult and complex conditions against a background of
increased demand as, for example, opioid painkiller addiction soars. From the
In 2018/2019 there were 47,790 mental health
discharges, an increase of 3% from 2017/2018 and the highest number of
discharges since 1997/1998.
In 2018/2019, the most common diagnosis for
mental health discharges was mental & behavioural disorders due to
psychoactive substance (including prescription painkillers and anxiety
In 2018/2019 most mental health inpatients
were treated within the NHS Board area in which they lived with approximately
5% treated elsewhere.