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Please stop giving us bogus figures

(144 Posts)
Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 17:33:22

I'm sorry if this annoys or upsets anyone but I'm getting thoroughly pissed off with the messing about with death statistics.

Sky news have just said:

"The number of coronavirus deaths in the UK has risen sharply to 26,097 as those in care homes and the community were included in the government's figures for the first time.

The total is up from 21,678 coronavirus deaths in UK hospitals announced on Tuesday."

Sorry, but between 21st March and 17th April, there have been around 27,000 more deaths than the five year average.

Five year average was 41,452 - this year was 68,395.*

Every year, and even this year until the pandemic, we have been roughly in line with the five year average (within a few hundred).

12 days later and they're still only saying 26,000.

They're dicking about with stats from different places, some UK, some England and Wales, some just England, it's impossible to get a clear picture.

And really, I don't care what anyone says, even if some of those 'extra deaths' are people not seeking help for a heart attack/stroke etc, domestic violence incidents, suicides etc, every one of those deaths is caused directly or indirectly by this bastard virus.

For anyone that says this is ghoulish, some people cope with stress by getting a handle on the facts, and feeling like facts are being played around with is adding to stress levels.

*Data taken from Office of National Statistics.

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Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 18:01:24

Just me then?

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Hawkmoth Wed 29-Apr-20 18:11:47

Not just you. We will only know when the ONS figures are fully updated and we can compare to the five-year average. And that will not take into account people that died because they didn't access the NHS for non-covid reasons. It'll be the best we're going to get.

Plump82 Wed 29-Apr-20 18:14:10

Its stressing me out too. And it really worries me all this talk of relaxing things when no figures suggest things are getting better.

ChippyMinton Wed 29-Apr-20 18:17:38

Don’t the reported figures have several days, maybe 10 days, lag due to the time taken to record deaths? In which case the discrepancy may not be as great as your figures indicate.

ChippyMinton Wed 29-Apr-20 18:18:27

I mean register, not record.

zippyswife Wed 29-Apr-20 18:22:38

Two family members have died with cv symptoms in care homes. He were told they had cv symptoms by care homes but on the death certificate there is no mention of it. Clearly vast numbers are being airbrushed out of this.

Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 18:25:30

Yes @ChippyMinton, so the ONS figures say 27,000 'extra' deaths to the 5 year avg up to 17th April. Yet on 17th April officially we had 14,576 from CV. This didn't include care home deaths at this point obviously. But still, nearly twice the amount of people have died than the 'official' figures state in that period, directly or indirectly, and now they're throwing in care home deaths but there's still a huge discrepancy.

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JackChaffinch Wed 29-Apr-20 18:29:01

In today's briefing prof Van Tam, deputy chief medical officer for England, said the best assessment of coronavirus' death toll will be the concept of "excess deaths". Hopefully the science bods have realised they are being set up to take the fall and will rebel and start telling us the facts.

JackChaffinch Wed 29-Apr-20 18:32:57

Chris Giles from the FT is all over the ONS Tuesday update. But it is a bit like being in an alternate reality when you read it hear people saying things are getting better and the schools are going to be reopening in a fortnight etc if you have the real numbers in front of you.

(The schools may well be reopening soon but I see nothing in the horrific numbers to April 17th that suggests that would be wise. )

Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 18:37:44

@JackChaffinch that's encouraging that it's starting to be picked up. Although it sounds overly simplistic, I really do think it needs to be a case of subtracting the ONS figures from the five year average to get a true picture. I've seen numerous accusations that the government/coroners are actively trying to inflate the figures by recording deaths as CV when they weren't, which is frustrating. At the end of the day you can't argue with the total death rate vs the five year average.

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Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 19:01:58

And I'm sorry about your family members @zippyswife flowers

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JackChaffinch Wed 29-Apr-20 20:56:39

I feel the same @Sparklfairy. I feel as if we're being fed reassuring lies as if we're children and I don't understand why some people seem to like it. Facts reassure me. People I can trust to tell the truth reassure me. Lies and meaningless bloody slogans like "We're following the science" not so much. I can't stand being gaslighted. Our loved ones' lives are in this governments hands and we can't even trust them to tell the truth, let alone look after us properly. We've only got to have this long lockdown because they did nothing even after they knew it was here. These are the people who told us Cheltenham was safe and that "many families are going to lose loved ones before their time." I still remember that first briefing when Chris Whitty said they expected 80% of us to get it and 1% of us to die and wondering why nobody else seemed to realise that 1% of the country was a bloody big number.

Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 22:07:43

@JackChaffinch you've expressed it far more articulately than I could! Facts are reassuring. Wishy washy flavour of the month slogans are not. I don't even know how the government thought they could get away with releasing half arsed figures. Then saying, 'these are hospital stats only' but stories coming out that people are being dissuaded from going to hospital, staying and dying in care homes, ambulances taking too long to come out or told to call back when the patient's lips are blue (!) - all those things mean that hospital admissions and deaths were lower.

Then you have the ONS releasing a total death rate, and even though they don't include Scotland or Northern Ireland in the same file, it's sky high and makes the government look either sneaky or incompetent. Destroys any faith I ever had that they can get us through this. Whenever lockdown is lifted or relaxed I'm not sure I'll be trusting the decision enough to actually go out.

People think the death rate is falling but the reality is we have no idea how many people are dying of this everyday until the ONS figures come out 11-17 days behind.

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ssd Wed 29-Apr-20 22:13:19

The government don't want us to know as they are desperate to open up the economy again, and if people knew the real figures they wouldn't go back to work.

MadeForThis Wed 29-Apr-20 22:15:31

They are playing with the figures so it doesn't look like they are responsible for thousands of deaths. Bad policy decisions and inaction.

Even the latest increased figures only include deaths where there was a positive CV test. Most sick and dying outside hospitals were not allowed a test. Widespread testing for those with symptoms was only announced yesterday. 6 -8 weeks too late.

ThinkAboutItTomorrow Wed 29-Apr-20 22:25:49

The real figure in my opinion should be a 12 month excess deaths number. Then we will see how many deaths are 'brought forward' deaths of people who would have died this year anyway. I suspect that will drop back quite a bit. But that's just a supposition.

Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 22:31:54

@ThinkAboutItTomorrow that's a very good point and would give a far clearer, more accurate picture. It's almost more frustrating that the ONS figures are released weekly, but two weeks ish behind, so it's a drip drip of 'oh shit, it's worse than we thought'. Plus the fact that the main figures on the ONS only include England and Wales so not even a like for like comparison with the 'official' figures. Such a mess! hmm

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Sosadandempty Wed 29-Apr-20 23:13:16

They are playing with the figures so it doesn't look like they are responsible for thousands of deaths. Bad policy decisions and inaction.

Even the latest increased figures only include deaths where there was a positive CV test. Most sick and dying outside hospitals were not allowed a test.

^ this 1000 times over.

I was so angry today when Dominic Raab came out with his claptrap about 26,000 deaths. How dare they lie to us like this and it makes an absolute mockery of those people who have died of the virus without being tested.

The government and their propaganda machine don’t want the world to know what an absolute scandal this is. and that we will have the highest death rate in Europe by the looks of it. A couple of days ago the Times and FT had estimated 40 / 45K deaths so far.

I am writing to my MP about this tomorrow - and I hope MPs kick up a stink about this if enough people complain.

And yes, I heard on the news today that hospital deaths might be plateauing, but community and care home deaths aren’t as yet. We need the government to be absolutely straight with us, but they won’t be.

Thank you very much for starting this thread OP.

Aurorie11 Wed 29-Apr-20 23:16:50

My Mum died in a care home a few days ago, she wasn't tested as there were other residents with positive results. Her death certificate gives C19 as primary cause of death, so you don't have to have been tested to have C19 recorded as cause of death

Sparklfairy Wed 29-Apr-20 23:39:57

@Aurorie11 I've heard both sides of this (my nan included, same circumstances as your mum flowers ). It seems some C19 deaths are not being accurately recorded, and some just being recorded as that without a test or in some cases, even any symptoms! This is why we can't trust the figures. The only numbers we can trust are the ONS, and take that weekly figure away from the five year average, and even those will have 'indirect' deaths caused by side effects of lockdown rather than the virus itself. But still better than the crap being dripfed to us. I'm honestly so angry about the deceit of it all.

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Sparklfairy Thu 30-Apr-20 06:35:39

It also doesn't help when every country has devised their own method of reporting. Who do Italy include for example? They were widely regarded to have one of the best (if not the best) health systems in the world which was utterly crippled by this, yet with yesterday's figures they're only 1500 ahead of us, despite supposedly being two weeks ahead with the virus progression. They're hospital admission rate seems to have been higher, but I've also seen articles of people dying at home/in care homes. Were/are these figures included there?

How can we even think of relaxing lockdown without a direct comparison with places like Italy, especially as we implemented it later than them?

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Sosadandempty Thu 30-Apr-20 06:48:46

I am very sorry for both your losses Sparklfairy and Aurorie11.

It was my understanding from what Dominic Raab said yesterday that they have only included people who were tested in their figures. So having Covid on the death certificate won’t have been a qualifying factor for them, in their effort to airbrush many people out as someone upthread said.

I knew the conferences were propaganda exercises, but yesterday was the the worst one IMO.

I think many less people will have died at home in Italy than in the UK as they admitted many more people to hospital and also treated people earlier. Here the policy has been to keep the NHS from being overwhelmed at all costs, and this has meant late (with increased chance of poor outcome therefore) or no admittance for many.

MurrayTheMonk Thu 30-Apr-20 07:01:12

The care home figures only include those confirmed to have had it. As a Care home manager I can tell you that up until yesterday I was told ' no testing available for service users'. I kept hearing on the news that only the first five suspected cases in each home were being tested-I couldn't even get that.

There will be lots of people that died in care homes and at home with Covid or of Covid where that wasn't mentioned on the death certificate so they won't be included in the death rate.It's just more fiddling of the figures.
It's no surprise. Bad news about social care, even when it makes the press which is rare because no one has really cared about it for years, is always underplayed. It's one of the reasons why they've been able to sell off, devalue and discredit social care for years.

Sparklfairy Thu 30-Apr-20 07:07:26

I think many less people will have died at home in Italy than in the UK as they admitted many more people to hospital and also treated people earlier

I agree with this. They absolutely crippled themselves in an effort to save people. Meanwhile we're hearing press reports that 25% of ITU beds are empty and the nightingale hospital is turning away patients/not being used.

If this is as bad as I fear it is, we've been thrown to the wolves and if you get it, there's a good likelihood you're own your own sad

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