A look at deaths in 2020

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Hello Friends!

I did an article for Think Scotland, published on 18th December on Deaths in Scotland for 2020, investigating deaths by cause and setting to try and determine what the cause of Scotland’s excess truly was.

Now that the deaths data have been updated to the end of 2020, I thought I would tie this up for the end of the year.

You can see that excess deaths number from all causes matches Covid-19 deaths in Wave 2. This is in sharp contrast to Wave 1, where excess deaths exceeded covid deaths because deaths from other causes were also in excess. The traces look quite different in Wave 2In waves 1 and 2, covid deaths happened overwhelmingly in hospitals and care homes and not at home, especially in Wave 2.

But where are excess deaths happening? We see that there were excess deaths occurring in the home for every week in 2020 except two. Deaths in the home have remained quite elevated since the start of the restrictions in March and remained the place where the majority of excess deaths were happening at the end of the year.

Cancer deaths have shifted from hospitals and care homes to the home in 2020, which is no surprise.

Circulatory deaths have also shifted out of hospitals and to the home.

Deaths from other causes have shifted from hospitals to the home, but there has been an excess in the home overall throughout the year.

Respiratory deaths to me are a great mystery this year. I understand that many respiratory deaths have shifted to covid, which makes sense. But I find it really strange how low respiratory deaths were in January and February 2020 when we know covid was in our midst and we have no deaths recorded as covid until Mid March. The deficit in respiratory deaths at the end of the year is really particularly striking.

Lots of love ❤

Stay sane 🧠 Stay strong 💪

Christine x

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