This week has continued to see upwards trends across the COVID-19 board. As we have predicted and reported, the second wave is here and baring its teeth. The problem government has been trying its best to forget has, again, grown so large that it can’t be ignored.
This is your weekly breakdown of the most important facts and figures you need to know so you can do your bit in the fight against Coronavirus.
Infection rates and Reproduction (R) number
Last Friday, governments office for science reported their weekly R number estimate jumped from 1.2 to 1.4 – One of the largest week-to-week jumps in the reproduction rate since March.
Currently, independent COVID-19 modelling shows a lot of variation with their R number estimates.
The Imperial College London COVID-19 modelling estimates the R number to be currently sitting between 1.27 – 1.83, with a median rate of around 1.50.
CMMID’s (Center for Mathematical Modeling of Infectious Diseases) COVID-19 modelling estimates the R number to be slightly lower at a median rate of 1.22, and a range of 0.99 – 1.5.
Taking all three sources into consideration, it is fair to speculate that R is currently sitting at around 1.50.
New and current COVID-19 cases
Yesterday, 4322 new COVID-19 cases were reported by the Department of Health. The last seven days have seen a total of 24261 new cases; averaging 3466 per day.
The ONS estimates that between the 4th and 10th of September that there was around 1.10 new COVID-19 infection for every 10,000 in England. This equates to around 6,000 new cases every day! Most concerning about the ONS estimates is that it only covered England; the data used is almost two weeks old.
Hospital and Deaths information
Earlier in the week, we reported that the Office for Science were not reporting live hospital statistics correctly. Since then we have spoken with the department who assure us it has been fixed.
Currently (19th September) there are 1020 patients in hospital, an increase of around 100 people in the last few days. COVID-19 hospital admissions are climbing slowly, but the last week has seen increases to the daily admissions.
There are now 127 patients in ventilator beds. Last week, there were only around 80 patients who required ventilation.
Overall, the NHS is still in a good position and are not showing any issues. We have seen reports of hospitals running out of staff or being under pressure, However, these seem to be isolated incidents.
While things are OK in hospitals at the moment, it is a matter of time before the NHS is under a lot of pressure.
What will trigger a second national lockdown
There has been a lot of talk about a second lockdown in the last few days. We have heard from a few sources that a second lockdown is almost certain.
At the current trajectory, it is likely a second national lockdown is slated for early October. Like the first lockdown, a second lockdown will be used to ‘protect the NHS’. Lockdown will be triggered once the NHS reaches its capacity.
Thanks to the improvements in how COVID-19 is treated, hospitals are ready to fight COVID-19 a lot better than the first wave; However, once the NHS reaches its saturation point government will have no option but to lock the UK down; or hospitals will fail and many more will die.
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