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Misleading Government statistics?

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jasminium Sun 14-Jun-20 15:46:31

This may already have been covered elsewhere, but I am struggling to make sense of the government daily statistics on

Working upwards from the "regions" figures which represent England only, you would expect that that the total would equal the total England cases figure on the "Nations" breakdown. In fact it is about 6k less. Any idea why?

If you then add in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales cumulative cases, the grand total of the four nations is currently about 102k less than the "total number of lab-confirmed UK cases" shown on the data dashboard page. The explanation for the discrepancy is given as the four nations total does not include tests carried out by third parties.

The problem I have with the above is that increasingly I see comments such as the case numbers in my town/ region are not rising and this is often based on the search results when entering your post code into the various online trackers available. These trackers also seem to form the basis of various newspaper reports concerning the small or non-existent rises in cases in certain towns/ cities. In reality, however, it seems that around 102k cases, representing the third party positive tests, have not been allocated to the four nations figures and thereon to the local authority figures used by these trackers and case numbers are being materially understated by these tools.

Maybe I am missing something but if people are of the opinion that new cases are minimal in their local area, disregarding the additional possible cases that have not even been tested for and are highlighted by the ONS, this is based on misleading data from the government which undoubtedly influences risk perception.

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