Andrew Marr’s hatchet job Part 1

This morning, Andrew Marr threw at Nicola Sturgeon this:

What about people dying in Scottish care homes? Again, we have gone back to the data and looking at a report by the University of Stirling – 47% of the deaths in Scotland were in care homes. That’s a lot, lot higher than in England where it was 30%. Terrible in both cases.

From the same report:

Care homes in England experienced the highest increase in excess deaths at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic compared to those in the rest of the UK, according to new research. A study – co-ordinated from the University of Stirling’s Management School – found that care homes in England recorded a 79 percent increase in excess deaths, compared to 66 percent in Wales, 62 percent in Scotland and 46 percent in Northern Ireland.

So, unusually, we have bias by selection from within the same report.

And, what does the percentage who died in one setting mean here? We know from the above that Scottish care homes had less death than English ones and do we also know that that because a lower percentage of all the deaths in England were in care homes that their hospitals were less effective?

Try these:

3 thoughts on “Andrew Marr’s hatchet job Part 1

  1. As stated doubt the dark forces of UK state has new command and control now and in full attack mode
    SNP badly need to take the gloves off now for interview by having the real simple facts at their disposal for a forceful response
    Such as
    Whist my Dear Andrew you appear to be very selectively plucking data from the sources who meet your underhand methods.
    So I have here sources and fig.from UK.Gov.daily corona
    But if you do not want me to state them
    I shall only accept such on the grounds you do not trust HM Governments data as honest and reliable
    Good my Dearest of fellows you decline to assert UK as dishonest
    So here are the honest reliable figs.i give you
    And before I do if you dare to interrupt me
    Then I shall terminate this interview forthwith on the grounds you do not want the viewers to hear U.K.Gov official figs.
    You are now warned to keep your lips firmly closed until i am finished which shall be less than 1 minute of your time,all something which now has your live controlling editor pulse racing,as to pull the plug or let me pull it for them
    England infections and pro rata with Scotland
    As / 100 k of population 45.8% higher
    And for deaths 35.6 % higher
    Notice is hear by served upon BBC and all others for that matter to choose your words,sources with the greatest of caution from now on
    So on that note I unclip my mic.and wish you a nice day.Goodbye

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  3. “.. we have bias by selection from within the same report.”

    Indeed we do and we also can see bias by selection made in a way that blatantly ignores the explicit caveat and ignores the preferred metric stated in the source research report.

    From the University of Stirling’s summary of this report:

    ‘Professor Bell said: “Given the variation in testing and death registration practices across the UK, it will never be possible to unequivocally assign care home deaths during the pandemic to COVID-19 or other causes. Therefore, measuring excess deaths presents the most reliable approach by which to assess the relative failure or success in handling the pandemic in care homes.”

    The BBC researchers briefing Marr simply could not have ‘accidentally missed’ Professor’s Bell’s clear statement!

    ‘Excess deaths ‘ is also regarded widely as the best metric for making country to country comparisons of wider community mortality rates. Many here have previously given links to the Euromomo Z Scores which permit such international analysis.

    The Euromomo Z Scores reveal for example that Denmark, Estonia, Finland and Norway have experienced no overall increase in excess deaths at any time during the period of the pandemic – at least to date. Ireland had a short lived period of a relatively low level of excess deaths.

    Remember, only England via its Westminster government has the same, comprehensive range of powers of intervention available to the independent nation states featuring in the Euromomo data. Scotland, Wales and NI do not.

    The devolved governments in the latter three parts of the UK have NOT had the same untrammelled ability to determine how to intervene to address the pandemic, at what scale, when and for how long as the government of England in Westminster. The means of addressing the pandemic in England has only been determined by the government of England in Westminster. The means of addressing the pandemic in Scotland, Wales and NI has been dependent in important respects on what the government of England in Westminster has opted to do.

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