New graphs for specific countries (USA, UK, Canada, Mexico) and specific Australian states

28 06 2009

I’ve started experimenting with some new graphs for different countries using the WHO data. The first graph shows the total number of confirmed cases in each of 5 countries. These numbers are cumulative, that is they show people who have the swine flu virus now, or who have had it some time in the past. The critical thing I’ve done, though, is expressed these numbers as “cases per 100,000 of population”. This makes the rates comparable across each of the countries. So, for example, Canada is shown as having reported 19.98 cases per 100,000 – this is the same as Canada’s current reported cases of 6,732 (assuming a population of 33.695m).

as at this week propn infected

The next graph just shows how this weekly snapshot (as at each Friday) has changed over time:

proportion of population infected per 100K v2

A better measure of the current rate of spread of the virus is to look at NEW cases reported in the last week. I’ve done that in the graph below – but again I’ve expressed that figure as weekly new cases per 100,000 of population so that the countries are comparable:

New cases each week global

By the way, I’ve done these type of graphs for Australia and the individual states. They are under “Australian Graphs” at the top of this blog. I’ve also updated the usual global graphs at the top of this blog too.


“…hospitals are in for a long winter…”

25 06 2009

Great piece here on ABC Radio’s PM program. Experts are starting to warn of a Winter here in Australia where the hospital system will be put under strain. Here’s an extract:

SIMON LAUDER: About 3,000 Australians have tested positive for swine flu. More than 100 have been hospitalised.

Professor of infectious diseases at the University of New South Wales, Raina MacIntyre, says the death-rate is still low.

RAINA MACINTYRE: Normally during seasonal flu we see about 2,500 to 3,000 deaths a year in Australia, so it’ll be in that range or more.

SIMON LAUDER: Professor Macintyre says hospitals are in for a long winter.

RAINA MACINTYRE: But we really need probably to see many more cases to get an accurate measure of what the mortality rate is. It’s still early days. It will definitely stress the hospital system.

SIMON LAUDER: What kind of things will we see at hospitals in terms of the extra burden?

RAINA MACINTYRE: We may see pressure on beds, increased waiting times in emergency, cancellation of elective procedures to free up beds, as well as staffing issues because we can expect that staff may be…there may be higher rates of staff absenteeism.

Australian and Global graphs updated – big jump in NT – third death in Australia

25 06 2009

I’ve updated the Australian and Global graphs at the top of this blog.

There’s been a big jump in the number of cases in the Northern Territory – going from 62 to 96 in the space of 24 hours. I assume this is a reporting blip.

Third death in Australia reported yesterday, (second in Vic). We’ve had the last two deaths in the last two days (23rd and 24th June). All three deaths in Australia so far have been in people with pre-existing medical conditions. The person who died yesterday was undergoing treatment for cancer – doctors are warning here that cancer patients need to be especially careful – as they do every flu season.

New cases continue to climb globally

23 06 2009

Daily new cases continue to climb globally. WHO have just put out update 52. Global graphs updated at the top of this blog, they’re worth a look.

Victoria adds another week’s worth and pushes the numbers right up

22 06 2009

Victoria’s done its “let’s report a whole week’s worth of figures in a single day” trick again and added 176 cases to the figures today. As a result we’ve had an increase of 297 new cases reported for the country today. Graphs at the top of this page are now updated.

Implied mortality rate continues to fall – updated graph

20 06 2009

As we get more data in, the implied mortality rate of this virus continues to fall. Since I last did this graph (as at 7 days ago) the implied mortality rate has fallen 0.08% to 0.41%. That’s over a 16% reduction in a week. For a full discussion on what I mean by “implied mortality rates”, including an explanation about why a falling “implied mortality rate” does not necessarily mean the virus is getting weaker, refer here.

implied fatality rate

First Australian death

20 06 2009

Information on the first person to die with Swine Flu in Australia:

  • From Crof’s blog (H5N1): here and here.
  • The ABC site has some good coverage here.

Note that the ABC is quoting the Australian Health Minister as saying:

“Whilst this is the first recorded death in Australia of a person who had swine flu, it is unclear whether that was a direct or contributing cause to the death,” …

The person apparently had other health issues.