30th: Nothing to be proud of but worth being accurate about?

The FT a month ago
The Herald in October
The Scotsman in June

How they wished. How it has turned out:

Coronavirus deaths per 1 million population

1San Marino1,737
4Bosnia and Herzegovina1,230
6North Macedonia1,187










ONS/NRS tabulated by https://www.travellingtabby.com/uk-coronavirus-tracker/

8 thoughts on “30th: Nothing to be proud of but worth being accurate about?

  1. I take it all figures are only based on deaths in which the person had tested positive for COVID? there are two official figures on the Scotgov website and the one which mentions “deaths in which COVID was mentioned on the death certificate” was much higher and would put Scotland much further up the table – depending on whether all countries are using the same method of recording.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They’re not. As with drug deaths Scotland records deaths where Covid is present. This was a change implemented from the ‘ 2015 Silverswan ‘ pandemic response exercise carried out by the Scottish health service and was one of just 17 recommendations. This was implemented in March 2020. If you check the National records you can check the change for yourself. England has no such change, it’s also widely suspected that the figures provided by the UK gov are seriously fudged.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Wee Chid
      They are all based and derived from each nations official data
      And does not inc.excess deaths unfortunately
      This the only way to compare apples with apples
      In fact ( Exc. Scotland) The UK since the beginning of the pandemic untill the 2 nd wave played games with the death figs.all resulting in reduced nos.
      EU.has a health system which was more or less set up at the behest of the UK,whereby all member states must report on their death certificates.the purpose of which was in main to identify any new disease or unusual increase of known etc.
      Now that on 1.1.21 we are out of EU it will be almost impossible for us to obtain this data
      Which would have without doubt revealed the truth
      All things aside I give you the standings of Scotland and England as to number of total positive cases as of 29/12
      England 29th in the world (28th on 27/12)
      Scotland 63 rd. (50 th on 27/12)
      Above shows Scotland rapiditly performing better at controlling the spread Whilst England continues to perform abysmally

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The second graph here shows excess mortality from all causes – https://ourworldindata.org/excess-mortality-covid

    You can add or remove countries. If I could post an image here, I’d start with Scotland vs England. At the first phase peak in April, England was at 113%, i.e. more than double the average over the past 5 years. Scotland was at 80%.

    At the latest date available there, 13 Dec, England is 14%, Scotland 3%.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for this George. These are the kind of sophisticated statistical approaches which enable us to draw tentative conclusions regarding comparisons. As the article makes clear, the methods of datacollection vary quite substantially. I was surprised by the illustrative example of how long it takes in the US to know really accurately how many people have died and the likely cause.


  3. Let’s not forget that the ScotGov are working against huge odds, in dealing with the EngGov, who have tried to play dirty with Scotland over this pandemic, putting obstacles where non should be etc. The EngGovs’ lack of clarity, their muddying the waters, and pretty much blocking any cohesion of the four UK nations, all the while pretending it’s Scotland creating problems, and accusing Nicola Sturgeon of ‘politicising’ the crisis, when she was trying to take a sensible, measured, and intelligent approach in keeping up with events, keeping people informed, giving sound advice and guidance with a dose of empathy for the people of Scotland, and beyond. It’s a miracle Scotland is managjng relatively well all things considered, let’s hope that continues.
    This next few months will be treble the work, with Scottish elections coming up, the FM will need plenty of support, I wouldn’t like her job, not one bit. Dealing with a pandemic must be bad enough, but with the added Eton mess in London, not many could handle that.

    Liked by 1 person

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