How does H2 2020 compare to 2017/18?

2 min read


2017/18 had a strong flu season, with the NHS near overwhelm. Let’s compare… 👇🏼

⬆️ The top graph maps the weekly total mortality between 2017/18 and 2020/21 for England.

⬇️ The bottom graph tracks the cumulative excess death in 2020 vs 2017 (pink), and contrasts that with the cumulative excess life lost at home that was NOT due to COVID-19 infection.

As you can see, there has been a heavier death toll between week 42-50 this year when compared to 2017, with what may well be similar tracking figures here on out as we process through the west of winter and early spring.

🕖 Time will tell…

❗️However, there is a BIG difference between the two years. In 2017/18, we were not damaging people through yearlong restrictions, fear and significantly reduced access to healthcare.

😬 When you factor in the burden this year has had on chronic disease diagnoses, timely care to limit the development of chronic illness, mental health, worsening deprivation, increased domestic abuse, increased problem drinking, worse diets, and hysterical fear of going to the hospital (and normal life)…

…is it really a surprise❓

🦠 We also have the winter resurgence of SARS CoV2 and other respiratory viruses, which unfortunately creates severe disease on those with the worst health.

2017 to 2018 Total Mortality comparison

What do we know about the excess?

In time, through triangulating many available data sources, will get a better read on the 2020 deaths caused directly from government interventions and restrictions.

🟡 But for now, we do have the YELLOW line to go on in the bottom graph. This is the cumulative number of excess deaths that have been occurring at home when compared to the five year average.

‼️ It’s currently at 36K, between mid march to end of 2020.

🤔 When you compare the ’20-’17 Excess Deaths (12.5K) to the Excess Non-Covid Home deaths (18.5K) in the bottom graph, it gets you thinking…

Just how much of our winter excess mortality is due to COVID❓ 

🤯 The bottom graph would suggest none when compared to 2017/18 – a harsh flu year.

This is not suggesting SARS CoV2, Influenza and the like aren’t causing havoc.

Instead, this analysis suggests that we are likely experiencing a tough winter because of the POOR HEALTH WE CREATED during the course of 2020 – also combined with winter viral prevalence.

Let me know your thoughts👇🏼




All data from ONS Weekly Deaths reports, combined with death setting figures from 2020


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