Chat about Novel Coronavirus - 2019-nCoV - COVID-19

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  • Drop in number of tests, increase in time for tests to come back. But that is the cynical view.

    I think vaccinating the young has the biggest effect on transmission as they are the most mobile and mixing the most. So hopefully this, plus schools and footbal as you say are the reasons

  • Big spike from the football and last set of restrictions being lifted. Now football's over and a couple of hot weeks keeping people outdoors to calm it down.
    Haven't yet had time for the 'freedom day' impact to start kicking in - but that might be balanced by schools being out. Will be interesting to see if people going on holiday starts to spread it about again. I suspect there might also be an element of people not testing so much in case their plans get cancelled.

  • Yep I'd agree hospitalisations will give a clearer if slower picture.

  • I would use the word "curiously" rather than "suspiciously".

    Yeah, poor wording on my part. Very rapid drop though.

  • Another quirk in the stats is that infections reported are only new infections; if you had COVID previously and then get re-infected, you aren't a new infection and aren't on the dashboard. No idea what re-infection rates are like though.

  • Around 1%, lots of people seem really annoyed with Peston for stating this is an issue

  • This is an interesting thread on just how much the increase was driven by the Euro's and therefore how important behavioural actions are
    https://twitter.com/jburnmurdoch/status/­1419912847795146760

  • where is the drop in tests? I keep hearing people say this, can someone explain what I'm missing? or is it just people repeating the same thing so it must be true type thing


    1 Attachment

    • Screenshot 2021-07-27 at 11.17.17.png
  • True. Tests are only dropping a small amount and very recently

  • That comes from the UK government covid data site which says there's been a 10% drop in the last 7 days. https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/details/­testing

    So there has been a drop, but, arguably, it's to be expected for, at least, two reasons: 1) schools are out; 2) if cases are indeed going down people are less likely to get tested.

    Edit - to add, the share of positives per test is dropping despite the a drop in testing numbers on the whole. So I wouldn't want to make the claim that the drop is simply a result of fewer tests.

  • That plot is great.

  • I wonder if secondary school lateral flow tests (twice a week but self reported) are included in the testing numbers. If they were then that would account for a reasonable drop in the number of tests as secondary schools finished (most state secondaries in England finished in the week leading up to Friday 23rd July).

    [EDIT] Ah, missed that point being made ^^ above

  • Anecdotally, my brother in law is the only one I know personally who watched football with other people. He caught it. Another friend went to a wedding, caught it.

  • Given what we know about the virus - if infection rates are dropping is the only plausible explanation that we've reached those sunlit uplands of herd immunity?

    No one seems able to explain it. For infections to be dropping in the real world at a rate similar to what we can see in the testing data would require an R rate significantly below 1 wouldn't it?

    It is baffling.

  • For the drop in positivity that's not surprising as the younger age groups had higher positivity rates, so if you stop testing lots of them (with lateral flow tests at school) then you'll stop finding lots of asymptomatic cases.

    Even those 18+ who are starting to get vaccinated are still weeks/months away from the benchmark "two doses plus two weeks".

    Two bits of anecdata:-

    My daughter (11yo) tested positive on a lateral flow test as we were going to be seeing elderly relatives and we've been doing lateral flow tests prior to such visits. Upon informing her school year lots of other parents did lateral flow tests and 4 other asymptomatic cases were found (by lateral flow, so at the "infectious" end of the scale), a few days later one went on to develop symptoms. Without effectively random testing by us those 5 cases could have gone undetected for a few days more leading to reasonable transmission.

    It was surprising (and mildly depressing) how few parents knew about the lateral flow tests, that they could be obtained for free from the gov.uk website or local pharmacies, etc.

    So a large number of these cases are in people who don't even have access to the vaccines, and now a significant proportion of them (secondary school to 18) now have no regular testing (even if it is just lateral flow) over the summer holidays where they will be going around the country. I wonder just how many of them are going to get caught by the PCR testing required for travel (and/or return to the UK).

    (Had our ONS tests 6 days ago, no call from T&T so I'd assume they're negative, I would have expected to hear by now if they had been positive. Good news is that I found that MiniGB can continue with the program and if she tests positive again [there is a good chance she will] within 90 days or the original test then she doesn't have to self isolate again - unless there are any symptoms obviously.

    Ref: https://www.ons.gov.uk/surveys/informati­onforhouseholdsandindividuals/householda­ndindividualsurveys/covid19infectionsurv­eycis/howyourresultswillbeused#testing-p­ositive-repeatedly-in-the-study
    )

  • I think most likely lots of factors. As mentioned before, football finished, hot weather keeping people outside, 1m+ isolating having been pinged, people kind-of-isolating so they don't get pinged before holidays, reduction in testing in schools and vaccines doing their thing.
    It's really good news (if somewhat surprising). Assuming another spike in the next couple of weeks and starting from lower rates than expected, we hopefully won't get to the 100k daily cases that were projected.

  • If this is the beginning of the end of covid in the UK, I would like to direct everyone's attention to this post:

    https://www.lfgss.com/comments/16103474/­

    Fucking called it...

  • I see all of that - just dont see how without the last bits (vaccine plus infection based immunity) you would get a reduction in cases. All the other things probably mean a less steep rise, but not a decline.

    The big question is clearly does testing data = real world infection levels and only hospital admissions will give us this answer really.

  • Can you "call" something with a question?

  • The big question is clearly does testing data = real world infection levels.

    No, that's what the ONS study is for. They test randomly regardless of whether people think they've got it or had it.

  • Ah, I meant "the big question is does the fall in positive tests reflect a broader reduction in real world infections".

    The ONS study may help with this, but hospital admissions are the only thing that can really provide that idea of its prevalence in the population (with a two week lag).

    Next ONS release is this Friday for weekending the 24th. Will be interesting to see how it tallies with the daily testing figures.

  • The ONS data lags, but the last dataset for Scotland for week to 17th July said the trend was uncertain (i.e. it may not be growing).

    https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationa­ndcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditio­nsanddiseases/bulletins/coronaviruscovid­19infectionsurveypilot/23july2021

    Scotland's drop in cases preceded England's, and they are now seeing a drop in hospitalisations.
    In addition, hospitalisations in Scotland have also started to fall, lagging the fall in positive tests.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-579719­90

    It does look like a real drop in cases, at least in Scotland, rather than a data issue.

  • i also lolled

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