Slowing the spread of infection and taking advantage of regional differences
Published 24 March 2020
Today was the first day following significant measures introduced by the Government to slow the spread of the Covid-19 disease - currently tracking above the 20%, we have modelled. These measures, if followed, should result in growth slowing, but we will not see this for another week or two.
London is the furthest ahead in terms of infections - this can be seen in the chart below (larger version available here) - but will soon have an additional 4,000 Covid-19 beds at the Excel centre. These will help to close the gap we estimated, although it will depend on how they are used - large flows going through a relatively small stock of beds can quickly cause havoc.
Although infections outside of London are lower, the growth rate is spiking in areas like Middlesborough - the home of South Tees Hospitals NHS FT and where we developed Space Finder a few years ago. How well the health services in these areas will be able to manage these demand pressures in coming weeks is something we are currently analysing - building on the work in our regional tracker. Options like the use of Excel will need to be considered, but so does the possibility of making use of regional variations - e.g. will London have spare capacity after its peak that can be accessed by the South East?