Nov 18 UPDATE: The figures provided by the NHS to the council scrutiny committee were WRONG, and a vast overstatement of the number of covid cases in Croydon, as pointed out by so many of our loyal readers in the comments below. Please see our new report by clicking here
There have been more than 100,000 positive cases of coronavirus recorded in Croydon since March.
That’s according to the chief executive of the local NHS trust, in a presentation and report given to a council scrutiny meeting last week.
According to Matthew Kershaw, there have been
covid-19 cases in the borough by last Tuesday.
It appears to be a remarkable figure, since assuming there have been very few instances of individuals testing positive for the virus multiple times, it suggests that 1 in 4 people in Croydon have tested positive for the virus. And this all during a period when there has been very little in the way of a proper testing system.
The figure was not questioned nor challenged by any members of the scrutiny committee.
Of those covid-19 cases, Kershaw said that 1,312 covid-positive patients had received treatment at Mayday Hospital.
The majority were treated successfully and discharged, but 303 patients had died “including former colleagues and members of the Croydon family”, Kershaw’s report states.
“We are ready for the second wave and will continue to care for our community throughout another lockdown and beyond,” Kershaw told the committee.
“We are encouraging residents to speak to their GP or seek help from the NHS if they feel unwell,” the report states.
According to Kershaw, Croydon is London’s leading trust for restoring elective surgery and treatment – carrying out the kind of work which in normal times might be regarded as “routine”, but much of which had to be postponed during the first covid lockdown to avoid the risk of transmission of the virus, and while resources were diverted to deal with the pandemic.
Mayday Hospital has since devised special restricted zones around the site to exclude covid cases from staff and patients working in other departments.
“We have seen the number of covid cases grow steadily” in Croydon, Kershaw’s report states. As at Friday, November 6, Mayday was treating 25 patients for the virus. Last Tuesday, Kershaw said, “A further 60 cases were confirmed in the borough in the past 24 hours”.
According to more recent figures from Public Health England, the number of positive cases in Croydon soared at the end of last week: 133 on Thursday, November 12, and 150 on November 13. In total, there were 610 new cases last week, up 31 per cent on the previous week.
In his report to the scrutiny committee, Kershaw said that working with other boroughs in south-west London, the preparations for dealing with a second wave of infections were well in hand. “We have restarted the Incident Control Room, or ICR. It is Gold Command for the NHS in south-west London.
“The ICR is operational seven days a week, from 8am to 8pm. We report directly into NHS England in readiness to support our NHS leaders to continue safely managing the growing incidences of covid-19 within our community and across our wider health and care system.
“Croydon was one of the hardest-hit areas in the country by covid-19 in wave one. The strength of our response has been built on the commitment of our workforce and the success of our partnership working in the borough.
“It is essential that local people continue to seek NHS advice, support and treatment for non-covid related illnesses and health concerns.
“Our engagement work over the summer told us that local people were worried about contracting covid-19 if they attended an NHS appointment in a healthcare setting. People were clear that they needed explicit reassurance and detailed information about what the NHS is doing to keep them safe in GP practices, hospitals and mental health settings.”
The NHS in Croydon has even produced this video to help to get that messaging across…
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Essentially a quarter of all residents have had Covid? Not disputing the figures, just shocked it’s so high.
It’ll be way higher than that – many had it before testing was available, my own family and many of our friends included.
Not only that, it’s over 7% of the UK total. Seems very and improbably high.
You are correct to dispute the 100,000 covid cases since March figure for Croydon – out of the 2020 Croydon population estimated at less than 400,000,
Especially as the current estimate of active cases for the whole of London since March is quoted by the BBC as being around 1.15 Million out of the population of 8.96 Million.
No way has Croydon, although one of the largest of the 33 London Boroughs, contributed 8.7% of this number
A back of an envelope calculation can challenge this figure to show exaggeration :-
E.G – 9 months. or say 38 weeks, at this weeks Croydon (high) figure of 466 cases, results in a figure of only 17,708 total cases since March
Other quoted statements are that most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment, and for the majority – especially for children and young adults – illness due to COVID-19 is generally minor.
Also it is stated that around 1 in every 5 people who are infected with COVID-19 may develop difficulty in breathing and require hospital care. People who are aged over 60 years, and people who have underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease or hypertension are among those who are at greater risk.
Therefore if only 1,312 needed hospital treatment – from the ‘1 in every 5’ rule the number of covid cases since March comes down to less than 7,000 cases in total for Croydon.
Alternatively by taking today’s published figure for Croydon of 120 cases per week per 100,000 population gives a number of cases as 38 x 120 x 4 = 18,240 cases since March.
So what are the real figures Mr Kershaw ?
1.15 million is for England, London is 131,000 (see link below).
By the NHS Trust reckoning, Croydon is 7.1% of UK total and/ or nearly 80% of the London total.
The Croydon figure published is plainly out of kilter and either the NHS Trust or the ONS is way off.
And according to the Govt. Covid data site this morning (updated to 15-11-20), there have been 131,013 total confirmed cases in London. That would give the LBC 77% of all London cases.
It would be helpful to see a ward by ward map, showing deaths in each. That might give some clues as to where to target resources and encouragement / reminders, warnings / prosecution even, about social distancing and mask wearing in shops.
At the risk of bringing down rage from conscientious objectors to mask-wearing, I am very concerned, and rather angered by, the fact that many customers in some food shops I have been into during the summer in South Croydon (post 1st lockdown and pre the current one) , shops where I have been a regular customer over a number of years, are still failing to wear masks, and respect social distancing as well while not wearing their masks.
I am avoiding those shops now, but that is not the point–the customers should be abiding by the restrictions that the rest of us are abiding by. If you can’t for some good reason wear a mask, for the half-hour or so you are in the shop, and the queuing time too, please stay out of the shops, and get someone to do your shopping and don’t subject the rest of us to infection.
Such mapping probably would only be helpful in identifying where the care homes are in the borough, and pin-pointing where Mayday Hospital is sited.
Sorry, the most important thing I failed to mention is– we need to keep safe the people who keep us safe–the nurses, GP’s, hospital doctors and hospital staff. Respect their health and lives. Mask wearing may be tedious, but it remains THE KEY ACTION we can all to to help them to help us, and stop NHS staff dying well before their time, because they are doing their duty. We need to do ours. That’s the most important thing right now. Young people need to respect this. Older people too. All of us need to do. Why should I endanger my GP or health worker ? What gives me or any of us the right to do so?. Nothing.
The figure quoted seems excessively high – it suggests that more than 25% of the population in Croydon has had Covid-19.