Almost correct but the community spread caused the slight increase in hospital infection

In a major breakthrough, the Herald almost gets in right. The second wave was, on the evidence, based on open borders and student outbreaks but a ‘spike in Covid spreading in hospitals?‘ sorry, no.

The supposed evidence for the ‘spike‘, though the word is not repeated, lies in the published PHS data:

Figure 1 is an epidemic curve of COVID-19 cases with first positive specimen taken during an inpatient stay. The length of the bars are the counts of COVID-19 cases during each week, from week ending 1 March to week ending 25 October 2020, with the bars broken down by hospital onset status: non-hospital onset (day 1 or 2 of in-patient stay), indeterminate hospital onset, probable hospital onset and definite hospital onset. The chart shows a steep increase in overall cases and definite hospital onset cases until a peak on week ending 5 April. This is followed by a decline in overall cases and definite hospital onset cases since this peak; few cases were observed during July and August. Overall cases and definite hospital onset cases have been increasing since week ending 30 August.

The increase, beginning around 20th September, to 189 hospital acquired cases, is still only 2% of the 9 303 cases reported in the week-ending 25th October.

I’ve reported elsewhere that the rate in England ranges from 17% to 25%!

This small increase is the perhaps unavoidable consequence of dealing with a much larger community spread of an airborne virus that in its aerosol form does not even respond to the pull of gravity and which began much earlier:

The second wave began at the beginning of August and grew quickly, fed by returning air travellers and later, students.

The increase in hospital spread is not one of the causes of the second wave but an effect of it.

Largely unaffected by the small increase in hospital infection, the number in ICU is flat at only a 7 day average of 6 new admisisons per day.

All talk of crisis is scare.

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One thought on “Almost correct but the community spread caused the slight increase in hospital infection

  1. On BBC radio paper review this morning Penny Taylor quoted Professor Bauld regarding student’s return in September. She said that “while English universities tested their students , with Cambridge to the fore in particular, none of the Scottish unis did ” . Anyone who has watched the news knew that there were many large outbreaks in English unis and that those paying for private testing were a small minority. The actual case figures in English university cities were obscured by the allocation of each case to the student’s home residence and this was only corrected by ONS/PHE last week. Her quote shook my reliance on Prof. Bauld as a reliable source of information , so I was forced to use the Herald website for the first time in a few months. Fortunately she had been mis-quoted by Ms Taylor and had actually said “some English universities”. It was just the usual BBC twist on the actual truth.
    Hopefully all universities , Glasgow , Edinburgh , Manchester ,Newcastle etc. will pay to test any returning students after the Christmas break.


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