Today’s (13th of October 2022) published results from the National Records of Scotland of Deaths Involving Covid are as follows:
- As of 9th October 2022, there have been a total of 15,817 deaths registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate.
- In week 40 there were 36 deaths involving COVID-19 (nine fewer than the previous week).
- The provisional total number of all deaths registered in Scotland in week 40 of 2022 (3rd to 9th October) was 1,275 (165 or 15% above the 5-year average).
Ages of those who died:
- Age 45 – 64: 4 deaths, 2 F, 2 M
- Age 65 – 74: 7 deaths, 5 F, 2 M
- Age 75 – 84: 9 deaths, 2 F, 7 M
- Age 85+ : 16 deaths, 11 F, 5 M
6 deaths were in Care Homes; 4 at Home/Non Institutional Setting; and 26 in Hospital.
Registered in the week 2nd to 9th of October 2022 were 1,275 deaths for all causes, an excess over the 5 year average of 165 deaths.
Of the 36 deaths involving Covid – Covid was the underlying cause in 17.
The proportion of deaths involving COVID-19 where it was the underlying cause has fallen over the course of the pandemic. It was 96% at the height of the first wave in April 2020, and 46% in the most recent month (September 2022). Over the whole pandemic (March 2020 to September 2022), 81% of deaths involving COVID-19 had COVID-19 as the underlying cause. NRS Monthly Report
The most common cause of death in September 2022 was ischaemic heart disease, which accounted for 11% of all deaths last month. COVID-19 has not been in the top-5 leading causes since April 2022.
All covid rules and restrictions have been lifted in Scotland, but the virus has not gone away.
We all need to keep playing our part to protect ourselves and others. You can do this by:
- getting the flu and COVID-19 vaccines if offered, to ensure you are fully protected
- staying at home if you’re unwell with symptoms or have a fever
- opening windows when socialising indoors
- wearing a face covering in indoor public places and on public transport
- washing your hands to protect yourself
Care for yourself and others to help slow down the spread of the virus and reduce pressure on our health services.
I am reluctant to agree with the “official” interpretation of the by NRS (and/or PHS) presented data. Physicians may often not even be aware that Covid has caused (or contributed to/worsened the prognosis of) a condition which eventually led to death.
For ischaemic heart disease for example, there is evidence that Covid increases the risk (https://www.acc.org/Latest-in-Cardiology/Articles/2022/05/17/13/42/COVID-19-Increases-Long-Term-Risk-of-Ischemic-and-Non-Ischemic-Cardiovascular-Disease).
It would be naive to believe that all medical professionals who certify deaths possess the expertise in relation to Covid-19, simply because it is dificult to keep up with all emerging evidence. Many in the NHS are under constant stress and their day job is to look after patients. Whether there is any capacity to read through research papers is doubtful.
Insofar, it could be a plausible assumption that far more deaths are occurring within the context of a previous Covid infection than the official statistics would show.
Comparing the situation in Scotland (and the UK overall) with European countries, it would also be rather strange if trends were different here than elsewhere. Several European countries (even the ones with similar levels of vaccination like the UK) are beginning to struggle with high numbers of hospitalisations and deaths are going up… much steeper than it would appear in the UK where testing and reporting has been dramatically scaled back which makes it almost impossible to gauge the true impacts.
One of the best sources for international comparison (noting the caveat that reporting and mitigation policies vary across countries) remains the Johns Hopkins University dashboard https://www.arcgis.com/apps/dashboards/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6