https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000kvv0

On Good Mourning Scotland this morning after Professor Bauld said:

Scotland’s done well. we were behind the curve in terms of when the virus came into Scotland. We locked down when we were at a better stage in terms of the numbers and we’re now seeing as we’ve heard from Ken, no deaths yesterday and slight rise in the number of cases but still very low. It’s inevitable we have to open up but as we go forward...

Brewer interrupts:

You, you, you, sorry to interrupt [no he isn’t] Linda but, you say that, but the brutal fact is we’ve had something like 4 000 deaths which is about a tenth of the UK. It’s about a population share of the deaths in the UK.

Bauld:

Absolutely in terms of our deaths but our case numbers in the last few weeks, there’s absolutely no doubt, if you compare us to some other regions of England, we’re in a better position

Three things:

First, Brewer was debating with her the loosening of lock-down measures and only the infection rate matters in this context. The deaths are mostly historical and the current rate is an average of 0.3 per day compared to 48 in England.

Second, and Bauld should have noted this, the FT/ONS now estimate the deaths in the UK to be 62 000, spoiling Brewer’s arithmetic.

Third, Bauld might have mentioned it then but does come back to this dramatic information:

For England, for example, the latest ONS data suggests there are about 17 hundred cases A DAY! So let’s remember that.

The Scottish 7 day average for infections is 8.1. Using Brewer’s arithmetic that would be a population share of 81. It’s 1700! more than 20 times higher.