Plan B

Covid-19 discussion, bring your own statistics
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Sciolus
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Re: Plan B

Post by Sciolus » Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:42 am

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 7:46 am
Plan B measures aren't going to prevent/reduce cases. Far too tiny to have an effect - a few more masks, a slight reversal of the going back to the office.

A year ago we did the similar f.cking around of closing pubs at 10 pm. That was such an amazingly inadequate piece of lockdown it seems to have been erased from collective memories. We know what works to drive down cases and it's not this silly trivia - it's shutting schools, closing pubs, ending nightlife and all the rest.

This is like the NHS campaigning to reduce lung cancer by asking for nicotine addicts to stop smoking between 11:06 and 11:08 each Tuesday morning.
Now I agree with you. At a minimum, we need a three-week firebreak over half term to get the underlying case rate down. It would also be nice if the government finally figured out how to do test, trace, isolate, support.
dyqik wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 11:23 pm
Today I realized that the CoVID case rate in the UK is over 50 times what it is here in Massachusetts. 1 in 250 people in the UK currently have CoVID.
Depends what you mean by "have covid", but 1 in 70 people in England currently test positive. I don't remember it ever being much more than 1 in 100 in the last two years. Or such a sea of red:
Cases per 100k per week.PNG
Cases per 100k per week.PNG (239.11 KiB) Viewed 863 times

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Sciolus
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Re: Plan B

Post by Sciolus » Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:54 am

lpm wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 10:24 pm
If the NHS can't cope with what is now a routine, year-after-year health requirement, the NHS should call for more funding. It shouldn't call for people to wear masks in Tescos, for f.cks sake.
It's a ten-year programme to get staffing levels to where they need to be, and yes we need to do that. But we can also do plenty of low-cost things to reduce the incidence of covid, which is unnecessarily high and an avoidable burden. The graphs are flat, but they're flat at too high a level.

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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:56 am

PeteB wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:29 am
Not sure where to post random Covid info now but

https://twitter.com/PaulMainwood/status ... 9242502144

The vaccines have created fairly effective no-weeing lanes ! (ie not really propagating through to older age groups nearly as much as it was)
Cases seem to be propagating from children to their parents, missing out the younger adults in between.
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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:57 am

shpalman wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 4:41 pm
Nobody knows why the case rate suddenly went down again last time, which means we can't predict whether it will do that again or not. It doesn't look like it so far.
Here's a Sample:
When secondary schools in Scotland opened in mid- to late August, the percentage of students testing positive rose sharply. Depending on the age group, the rates peaked at 8%-10% before cases started to fall. At the same time, in early September, national cases fell sharply. Daily cases in Scotland more than halved in a month.

England may follow suit in the weeks ahead, but there is uncertainty...
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Re: Plan B

Post by lpm » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:10 am

WFJ wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:38 am
Why do you think the UK is currently has the World's worst new case rate, and is up there in deaths too? These measures are what are currently in place in most of Europe, where cases and deaths are much lower.
No, no, no. That's pure starting point effect.

The UK unlocked with cases very high and they stayed at the basic plateau. Civilised countries unlocked with cases significantly lower and they stayed at that lower level.

Mask theatre has nothing to do with it.
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Troubled Joe
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Re: Plan B

Post by Troubled Joe » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:18 am

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:10 am
WFJ wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:38 am
Why do you think the UK is currently has the World's worst new case rate, and is up there in deaths too? These measures are what are currently in place in most of Europe, where cases and deaths are much lower.
No, no, no. That's pure starting point effect.

The UK unlocked with cases very high and they stayed at the basic plateau. Civilised countries unlocked with cases significantly lower and they stayed at that lower level.

Mask theatre has nothing to do with it.
I agree in part in that we unlocked with cases high, mostly IMHO so the Great High Bullingdonite Pooh-Bah could take credit for (incredulous cough) Freedom Day, but that doesn’t mean a return to masks isn’t worth it - firstly as a bar to transmission per se and secondly because of the theatre aspect - it is a visual sign that it’s still out there and may as a result assist in nudging people to modify other behaviours too.

IRN I have never understood why some people (not directed at you specifically, just a general point) see anti mask wearing as such a hill to die on.
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lpm
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Re: Plan B

Post by lpm » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:20 am

Sciolus wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:42 am
lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 7:46 am
Plan B measures aren't going to prevent/reduce cases. Far too tiny to have an effect - a few more masks, a slight reversal of the going back to the office.

A year ago we did the similar f.cking around of closing pubs at 10 pm. That was such an amazingly inadequate piece of lockdown it seems to have been erased from collective memories. We know what works to drive down cases and it's not this silly trivia - it's shutting schools, closing pubs, ending nightlife and all the rest.

This is like the NHS campaigning to reduce lung cancer by asking for nicotine addicts to stop smoking between 11:06 and 11:08 each Tuesday morning.
Now I agree with you. At a minimum, we need a three-week firebreak over half term to get the underlying case rate down. It would also be nice if the government finally figured out how to do test, trace, isolate, support.
dyqik wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 11:23 pm
Today I realized that the CoVID case rate in the UK is over 50 times what it is here in Massachusetts. 1 in 250 people in the UK currently have CoVID.
Depends what you mean by "have covid", but 1 in 70 people in England currently test positive. I don't remember it ever being much more than 1 in 100 in the last two years. Or such a sea of red:
Cases per 100k per week.PNG
The sea of red is children. We can see from hospitalisations what's happening in the old/vulnerable groups - pretty much unchanging.

There is an argument to be made for a firebreak. But the "NHS leaders" didn't make that argument. They asked for trivia instead.
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WFJ
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Re: Plan B

Post by WFJ » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:31 am

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:10 am
WFJ wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:38 am
Why do you think the UK is currently has the World's worst new case rate, and is up there in deaths too? These measures are what are currently in place in most of Europe, where cases and deaths are much lower.
No, no, no. That's pure starting point effect.

The UK unlocked with cases very high and they stayed at the basic plateau. Civilised countries unlocked with cases significantly lower and they stayed at that lower level.

Mask theatre has nothing to do with it.
Masks are only one part of the suggested measures. Vaccine certification requirements would be the main point. Although reading what these requirements would be, I agree they are a joke. I had assumed they would be the same as in Europe (eg all entry to pubs, bars, restaurants etc).

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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:43 am

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:10 am
WFJ wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 8:38 am
Why do you think the UK is currently has the World's worst new case rate, and is up there in deaths too? These measures are what are currently in place in most of Europe, where cases and deaths are much lower.
No, no, no. That's pure starting point effect.

The UK unlocked with cases very high and they stayed at the basic plateau. Civilised countries unlocked with cases significantly lower and they stayed at that lower level.

Mask theatre has nothing to do with it.
Depends what you mean by "unlocked" but most of Italy has been a White Zone all summer but case rates had been coming down steadily since mid-to-late August from ~75/100,000/week down to about 30/100,000/week now. It may have just bottomed out.

Germany and Austria have been flatter though.

Some civilised countries

(In the same time period, the UK had been bouncing around between 300 and 400/100,000/week but is now heading for 500.)
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lpm
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Re: Plan B

Post by lpm » Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:57 am

I bet the explanation is all about measures in schools. A chart of UK adults only would show a gentle downward slope, overall.
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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Thu Oct 21, 2021 10:01 am

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:57 am
I bet the explanation is all about measures in schools. A chart of UK adults only would show a gentle downward slope, overall.
Well you could demonstrate that for England if you knew how to deal with the json file you can download off of the website. It doesn't do the age breakdowns for the other nations and I haven't looked if the other nations have their own age breakdowns.
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Re: Plan B

Post by Woodchopper » Thu Oct 21, 2021 1:10 pm

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:57 am
I bet the explanation is all about measures in schools. A chart of UK adults only would show a gentle downward slope, overall.
No time to make a chart but the heat map for age disaggregated data on cases in England shows rising cases among adults over the past month.
https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/details ... mographics

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Re: Plan B

Post by lpm » Thu Oct 21, 2021 2:32 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 1:10 pm
No time to make a chart but the heat map for age disaggregated data on cases in England shows rising cases among adults over the past month.
https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/details ... mographics
Not really.

It goes up a bit. It goes down a bit. It goes up a bit.

All probably within some reasonable error bar for the stats.

Obviously it's gone up a bit in the last couple of weeks, in line with the overall total. But it's trivial - no chance of being exponential. To take one example, 60-64 year olds, it was:

21 July = 200
21 August = 200
21 September = 150
7 October = 200
15 October = 250

I must admit I hadn't realised how far case numbers had dived for young people. For 20-25 year olds:

21 July = 1,100
21 August = 630
21 September = 170
7 October = 160
15 October = 190

This is an ex-epidemic.
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Re: Plan B

Post by Herainestold » Thu Oct 21, 2021 2:57 pm

At this point the only thing that will help is a hard lockdown while we accelerate the booster program.
Masks are good, I wear mine all the time, but on a population level they aren't going to make that much of a difference.
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Re: Plan B

Post by raven » Thu Oct 21, 2021 10:54 pm

lpm wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 9:57 am
I bet the explanation is all about measures in schools. A chart of UK adults only would show a gentle downward slope, overall.
Would it? This graph from the PHE weekly surveillance report suggests cases are rising in adults too, albeit much more slowly:
Weekly Flu and COVID-19 Report_w42 - case rate by age pdf.png
Weekly Flu and COVID-19 Report_w42 - case rate by age pdf.png (73.08 KiB) Viewed 733 times
Although if you look at the regional breakdown most of that seems to be coming from the SW, and maybe the SE. Hm, those false negative PCRs affected the SW and a test site at Newbury didn't they.
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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Sun Oct 24, 2021 8:41 am

UK government paves way to bring in tough ‘plan B’ Covid rules

'Tough' rules including
the use of vaccine passports at higher-risk venues and mass gatherings, as well as legally mandating the use of face masks in some settings.
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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Wed Oct 27, 2021 3:49 pm

By the way, the number of deaths reported in the UK over the past 7 days is 1010, i.e. over the "acceptable" number of 1000. It'll come down in a bit though since cases are coming down. And then cases will go up again at some point so it'll go up again. Who knows?

"Normally" about 10,000 people die each week at time of year, by the way.
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Re: Plan B

Post by dyqik » Wed Oct 27, 2021 6:20 pm

shpalman wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 3:49 pm
By the way, the number of deaths reported in the UK over the past 7 days is 1010, i.e. over the "acceptable" number of 1000. It'll come down in a bit though since cases are coming down. And then cases will go up again at some point so it'll go up again. Who knows?

"Normally" about 10,000 people die each week at time of year, by the way.
It might not go down as fast as cases, as the NHS is probably exhausted. Running at or above capacity for an extended period tends to reduce capacity and increase errors, due to burnout.

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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Wed Oct 27, 2021 8:30 pm

dyqik wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 6:20 pm
shpalman wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 3:49 pm
By the way, the number of deaths reported in the UK over the past 7 days is 1010, i.e. over the "acceptable" number of 1000. It'll come down in a bit though since cases are coming down. And then cases will go up again at some point so it'll go up again. Who knows?

"Normally" about 10,000 people die each week at time of year, by the way.
It might not go down as fast as cases, as the NHS is probably exhausted. Running at or above capacity for an extended period tends to reduce capacity and increase errors, due to burnout.
The big July spike didn't really cause a peak in deaths; the more recent peak in deaths when they went about 1000 per week followed the smaller peak in early September, which wasn't even 40,000 per day. So it depends a bit on the age mix in the peak we've just had, I suppose.

There's a delay between cases and deaths because it takes a while for a case to die, but there will be a longer delay if the cases are high in young people which then take a while to spread to older people.
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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Fri Oct 29, 2021 10:11 am

Wales is set to announce changes in its Covid restrictions as a result of the rising case numbers across the UK
The Welsh government will be encouraging people to work from home if possible, and also insisting that anybody in a household with somebody who has tested positive also isolates until they have a negative PCR test.

First minister of Wales Mark Drakeford was critical of the UK government, saying “the numbers at this level are causing harm in the community, are driving more people into hospital. And we have to make a concerted effort over the next three weeks to bring those numbers down. I have for a number of weeks been urging [the UK government] to move to Plan B. It would certainly help us here in Wales to have a single communication that says across England and Wales we are all taking this virus as seriously as we need to take it as we go into the autumn and the winter.
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Re: Plan B

Post by lpm » Wed Nov 03, 2021 10:43 am

Time to talk about how amazingly good my 12 June forecast was, plus how awesome I am in general.

It was just a very rough and ready spreadsheet model but it was superior to any other forecast produced for the UK. When others were predicting a relentless rise to over 100,000 cases a day, or over 200,000, I was pretty much a lone voice for a lower level and an end to exponential rise.

For context, cases on 12 June were at the 6,700 level and rising fast.

1) "Gives new cases rising to 60,000 a day" - I was close, cases rose to a peak of 54,700 on 17 July

2) "basically at a plateau for several months" - this is the key thing I got right and as far as I know everyone else missed. Most assumed a spike like waves one and two, rather than a long flat purgatory. What I missed was the sudden dive in the second half of July to the approx 30,000 level, but nobody had this on their radar. And we don't really understand why that dive happened. This meant the long plateau has been at the 30,000 to 40,000 level, rising recently to 40,000 to 50,000, rather than my forecast of 60,000

3) "60,000 cases in vaccinated-UK is a bad wave but very different to 60,000 in unvaccinated-UK. I think we get away with it." - when others were forecasting doom and despair, I was spot on that we had a good chance of getting away with it. There's been no disaster, no breaking of the NHS, no reversal of course back into lockdown. As I've said many times, what the govt did isn't what I'd choose and it's like speeding down a foggy motorway at night - you probably get away with it but it's not worth it.

4) "But it's 60,000 cases a day for a long long time, rather than the temporary peaks seen in waves 1 and 2." - again I predicted the key feature of the last few months, the long haul at the high case load.

5) NHS: "Temporary for a month is a very different problem to persisting for several months." - I identified the key issue for the NHS in another post, that it wasn't going to be a short lived spike with emergency measures and exhausted staff getting through the crisis then going home to rest. Instead it's been what we've seen, relentless stress on hospitals that never lets up, month after month with no prospect of any respite on the horizon.

6) "at a guess this wave would only kill 10,000 people which is nothing to Johnson." - deaths since 12 June have been 13,200. Twitter's doom gang has been wildly off with their death forecasts, even official SAGE forecasters were predicting 45,000 across the summer. I kept it in proper perspective.

The professional modelling of Covid has been pretty much a disaster. We've talked a lot about how bad it was in March 2020. It was spot on in autumn 2020 and for the disaster of "saving Christmas". But it went back to being bad in June 2021. Imperial, Warwick, LSHTM - they were all wildly off. Reality wasn't just below their central expectation, it kept way down below their likely range lower limits. It's embarrassing. There's no way a bored amateur with a couple of hours to spare on a Saturday morning and a blank spreadsheet should be beating big teams of professionals. Have they got the guts to do a post-mortem on why they got it so wrong?
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Re: Plan B

Post by Millennie Al » Thu Nov 04, 2021 2:45 am

lpm wrote:
Wed Nov 03, 2021 10:43 am
Time to talk about how amazingly good my 12 June forecast was, plus how awesome I am in general.
You deserve a gold star: ⭐ You can put it in your signature to remind us of your impressive skills.
Have they got the guts to do a post-mortem on why they got it so wrong?
Well, part of it (at the beginning) was using excessively complex models. And another part was failure to take into account that predictions from a model will change the thing they're modelling (assuming anyone pays any attention to the model). And, of course, everyone was making their own mini model and adjusting their behaviour according to what they thought would happen, so modelling had to have an element of metamodelling to account for all the individuals' models.
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Re: Plan B

Post by sTeamTraen » Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:41 am

Millennie Al wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 2:45 am
And another part was failure to take into account that predictions from a model will change the thing they're modelling (assuming anyone pays any attention to the model). And, of course, everyone was making their own mini model and adjusting their behaviour according to what they thought would happen, so modelling had to have an element of metamodelling to account for all the individuals' models.
I don't think many people pay any attention to the models or change their behaviour based on them, at that level of granularity. The differences between the first half of 2020 and the second half of 2021 are (1) everyone knows Covid exists, (2) everyone has had more than a year to think about their microcovid budget (although they probably don't express it in such nerdy terms), and (3) vaccines.

Exponential growth isn't going to happen for the moment because we have a sort of de facto herd "immunity". That consists partly of actual immunity, but also --- perhaps even principally --- of large numbers of people who are unlikely to get Covid because they are mostly staying in and avoiding, or greatly reducing, their social contacts. (*raises hand*) So the virus will spread all round your local pub, but not around the estate to anything like the same degree.
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Re: Plan B

Post by bob sterman » Thu Nov 04, 2021 3:56 pm

sTeamTraen wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:41 am
Millennie Al wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 2:45 am
And another part was failure to take into account that predictions from a model will change the thing they're modelling (assuming anyone pays any attention to the model). And, of course, everyone was making their own mini model and adjusting their behaviour according to what they thought would happen, so modelling had to have an element of metamodelling to account for all the individuals' models.
I don't think many people pay any attention to the models or change their behaviour based on them, at that level of granularity.
Certainly. Not at the individual level. But governments introduce policies and laws in response to models - which change individual behaviour.

So modellers say "here's what will happen if you don't do something" and the government decides to do something , then If the cases and deaths DID in fact follow the model - the modellers really would be wrong! As doing something made no difference.

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Re: Plan B

Post by shpalman » Thu Nov 04, 2021 4:39 pm

bob sterman wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 3:56 pm
sTeamTraen wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 9:41 am
Millennie Al wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 2:45 am
And another part was failure to take into account that predictions from a model will change the thing they're modelling (assuming anyone pays any attention to the model). And, of course, everyone was making their own mini model and adjusting their behaviour according to what they thought would happen, so modelling had to have an element of metamodelling to account for all the individuals' models.
I don't think many people pay any attention to the models or change their behaviour based on them, at that level of granularity.
Certainly. Not at the individual level. But governments introduce policies and laws in response to models - which change individual behaviour.

So modellers say "here's what will happen if you don't do something" and the government decides to do something , then If the cases and deaths DID in fact follow the model - the modellers really would be wrong! As doing something made no difference.
In this particular case, though, the modellers said "here's what will happen if you don't do something" and the government decided to not do anything, and it didn't happen anyway, and we don't know why.

But maybe while people don't pay any attention to the models or change their behaviour based on them, at that level of granularity, they do start paying attention when people they know start catching covid.
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