the importance of R number and testing

Not really and idea, more of an observation. The R number will vary across Scotland and will be higher in hot spots. By testing key workers or hospital admissions only the number of infections will surely be higher eg in Care homes. Why have there been limited (if any?) tests carried out across the population, sampling randomly? By building up a picture across the country the base rate of infection would then be established. Actual but random numbers are surely more reliable when calculating R0

Why the contribution is important

Establishing a more reliable R0 to aid decisions regarding lock down easing.

by eesupcarefully on May 08, 2020 at 03:51PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.4
Based on: 7 votes


  • Posted by CWIL May 08, 2020 at 16:01

    Further clarity required re what data is being used to calculate the R number please. Especially as this is being used as a key factor in decision making
  • Posted by Graham May 08, 2020 at 16:17

    Current R0 projections are based on the current national circumstances after 6 weeks of lockdown, with at least 6000 new cases per day. Any relaxation of the lockdown in certain areas will inevitably result in rapid local increase in the R number.
    The R number is a local number not a national one - the R number increase in the centre of Glasgow is going to be greater than that in areas of population density, where greater control is possible. Just like exploding a bomb.
    But no one really knows the facts about this bomb.
  • Posted by Chimp May 08, 2020 at 16:50

    I believe the R number for the general population is significantly below 1, but is being inflated by care home figures where most new cases seem to be occurring. Lockdown care homes as tight as a drum, and allow the rest of us some respite from the unnecessarily draconian lockdown measures. I live in Lothian where only around 2000 cases have been reported in total from a population of almost 1 million. How many patients have been admitted to the Louisa Jordan??? Get some perspective and let us out to participate in activities where we can maintain social distancing.
  • Posted by DevVeh May 08, 2020 at 17:01

    We did 3,075 on May 7th. From wikipedia for NHS Scotland "Approximately 160,000 staff work across 14 regional NHS Boards".

    There just isnt enough testing, even just to cover the NHS workers. And to have decent sized sample in an area we would need to test a reasonable amount of people. I dont see how that is possible with current levels of testing

    We just need more testing full stop
  • Posted by TL May 08, 2020 at 19:44

    testing should be used to gather data to support strategic planning in addressing when, where and how to ease lockdown conditions
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