Coronavirus (COVID-19): modelling the epidemic (issue no.84)

Latest findings in modelling the COVID-19 epidemic in Scotland, both in terms of the spread of the disease through the population (epidemiological modelling) and of the demands it will place on the system, for example in terms of health care requirement.

This document is part of a collection


1. Coronavirus (COVID-19): additional data and information - (

2. Using data to 4th January 2022.

3. Particular care should be taken when interpreting this estimate as it is based on low numbers of cases, hospitalisations, or deaths and / or dominated by clustered outbreaks. It should not be treated as robust enough to inform policy decisions alone.

4. The cyan bars use Covid-19 test data and purple bars use multiple sources of data. The estimate produced by the Scottish Government is on the left (green). The UKHSA consensus range is the right‑most (red). Data to 4th January 2022. R, incidence and growth rate as of 21st December 2021.

5. See Figure 6

6. All projections are based on current vaccine roll-out plans and efficacy assumptions. Data to 5th January 2022.

7. The actual positive tests are adjusted to coincide with the estimated day of infection.

8. Note that SPI-M-O was not able to provide an overall consensus on hospital occupancy, and so the projection for hospital occupancy is based on two models, including that of the Scottish Government (SG Model).

9. A 7-day running average is used, though due to reduced sampling, after 20th December the more recent data points shown represent around 30 measurements on 29th December and 4th January, and a smaller number of additional measurements on the 28th and the 3rd. This is much reduced from typical weeks. Nevertheless, last weeks' samples cover around 65% of the Scottish population.

10. Anomalously high values, one in Seafield (Edinburgh) in mid-February (see Issue 40), one in Dunblane in mid-June, and two in Daldowie in January, were removed. For this graph, a wastewater RNA average using the last 7 days of data is computed at every sampling date. Information from the ONS Coronavirus Infection Survey is overlaid, with a scale chosen to approximately match the displayed peak of the survey percentage to the recent peaks in cases.

11. Coronavirus (COVID-19): additional data and information - (

12. Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant: a new chapter in the COVID-19 pandemic - The Lancet

13. Advancements in detection and interpretation practices allow us to identify when outlying results are anomalous rather than indicators of spikes in Covid-19 levels. Table 2 provides population weighted daily averages for normalised WW Covid-19 levels with the outliers removed. See Technical Annex in Issue 60 of these Research Findings for further details.

14. Coverage as for week ending 4th January 2022.



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