Christmas to new Year

A record of a week of Covid in England

28 December
Data is a bit erratic at present due to the Christmas holidays but in the four days since Christmas day in England:-

  • New cases have risen by 3% but appear to be levelling off.
  • Hospital admissions have gone up 33%. These would be the people who were new cases about 12 days ago. Since then new cases have gone up by 50%

29 December

  • New cases have risen 18% in a day, to 13,287, which is maybe not levelling off – probably the Christmas party spike.
  • Hospital admissions are not published, but the number of people in hospital is 10,462 and has risen 10% since yesterday and 46% since Christmas day. This us the highest number since March 1st.
  • The number on ventilators is fairly constant at around 770. These are probably Delta patients. This implies that the Delta variant numbers are fairly constant at the figure in Early December, when we were had 6,000 in hospital. So we have around 4,400 patients with Omicron in hospital, and 6,000 with Delta.
  • Deaths may be going down, but the fluctuation in numbers from day to day suggests problems in reporting.
  • The government is telling people to take a lateral flow test before they go out
  • There is a shortage of lateral flow tests 
  • Idiots are still active – this lot of anti vaxxers storming a testing site! 
  • The department of heath posted this stupid tweet encouraging people to jet jabbed before new year to protect your loved ones.  The vaccines take 1 to 2 weeks to become effective.
  • On a personal note, my step daughter, double jabbed and boosted three weeks ago has tested positive and is now isolating. So are her two children. They are running out of lateral flow tests and can’t find any more. 

30 December

  • The health secretary has admitted there is a shortage of lateral flow tests at the most critical period.
  • PCR testing is also being limited
  • New cases 146,604 up 6% on yesterday,  this 1s a 29% rise since Christmas day.
  • Covid patients ar e now 11,452, a 9.4% increase on yesterday, and 60% since Christmas day.
  • The government strategy is to prepare more hospital beds  and to party-on.

31 December

  • The NHS says does not have enough staff to service the extra hospital beds.
  • New cases 160,276 up 9% on yesterday and 41% since Christmas Day
  • 12,395 covid patients in hospital. That’s 72% increase since Christmas day and 8% higher than yesterday.
  • New year celebrations go ahead

Update 3rd January

Unbelievably, amid the huge increase in cases, and just before the expected demand for testing kits by people trying to follow advice before going out at new year,  the sole distributor of Covid lateral flow tests (LFTs) to pharmacies closed for four days over the Christmas period just as it received a delivery of 2.5m devices

There seems to be a 7 day lag between case numbers and hospitalisations. 7 days ago we had 96,000 new cases and probably 45,000 were Delta (as in early December). So we were running at 51,000 cases per day of Omicron to put 4,400 of them in hospital. That is a rate of 12 cases per day for one patient.  Delta had 45,000 cases for 6,000 patients or about 8 cases per day for 1 patient. (Before the vaccination roll-out the ratio was 2 cases per day for 1 patient)

Current cases of 183,000 out of which 45000 are Delta and the rest Omicron. In 7 days time patients in hospital will be around 18,000.  The daily rate of new cases has not peaked yet and new year parties are going ahead. 

The highest number of patients we have had in hospital in England was 34,336 on 18th January 2021. With the effect of the vaccines and the milder effects of Omicron we would have to arrive at around 400,000 cases per day to match that.  This is very unlikely. If cases continue to rise at the current rate we would reach that by mid January. But the government will almost certainly do something before then(??).