Real-time tracking of a pandemic, as data accumulate over time, is an essential component of a public health response to a new outbreak. A team of statistical modellers at the Medical Research Council Biostatistics Unit regularly nowcast and forecast COVID-19 infections and deaths. This information feeds directly to SAGE sub-group, Scientific Pandemic Influenza sub-group on Modelling (SPI-M) and to regional teams at UK Health Security Agency (UK HSA).
The work uses a statistical programming model called a transmission model (Birrell et al. 2020), data on daily COVID-19 confirmed deaths from UK HSA (by NHS region and age group), and published information on the risk of dying and the time from infection to death, to reconstruct the number of new COVID-19 infections over time; estimate a measure of ongoing transmission (R); and predict the number of new COVID-19 deaths in different regions and age groups.
Graph of estimated number of new COVID-19 infections in England Graph of predicted hospitalisations in England (red dots – observed)
The shaded areas show periods of national lockdown, the green lines the dates (once confirmed) of the steps in the roadmap in the UK Governement’s COVID-19 Response — Spring 2021, and the red line shows the date these results were produced (5 Dec).
- Report on Nowcasting and Forecasting – 13th December 2022
- Report on Nowcasting and Forecasting – 21st November 2022
- Report on Nowcasting and Forecasting – 5th August 2022
- Report on Nowcasting and Forecasting – 15th July 2022
To view other previously published reports, click on any of the reports above (except for the most recent) and the full list is on the left side of the screen.
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