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Scenario modelling

The National Association of Funeral Directors has commissioned the consultancy Europe Economics to produce scenario models that show what the future path of the UK mortality rate might look like to September 2020, especially as lockdown is lifted.

The research was commissioned to provide funeral directors with some idea of what could come next, to allow them to plan effectively under various scenarios following a lifting of lockdown.

The scenarios model potential deaths from all causes, not just COVID-19 and are based on bringing together published, respected data, including:

  • Two scientific views of the Infection Fatality Rate, one promoted by Oxford University, the Swedish government and Stanford University and the other promoted by Imperial College London and others.
  • Scientific analysis of the reproduction rate in different regions of the UK during the lockdown.
  • ONS (and equivalent) weekly deaths data from the four nations of the UK.
  • A range of other known and published information about the COVID-19 pandemic.

The results suggest that, even if the government is successful in controlling the spread of Coronavirus at a national level, post-lockdown, some regions of the UK could be in for a significant second peak of deaths, from all causes, and that second peak could be higher if lock down is lifted less successfully.

The intention is to update the models regularly, as new inputs are available – such as the details of how lock down will be lifted in different parts of the UK, the experience of lifting lock down in other countries, progress towards effective therapeutic treatments etc.

It should be noted that the data provides only an approximate indication of the range within which deaths in each area of the UK lie, under a set of plausible scenarios reflecting the very considerable scientific and policy uncertainty at this time. The models use epidemiological and other scientific assumptions drawn from the current literature, but do not endorse any specific conclusions given the very considerable scientific debate there is about many aspects of these matters at present.

Click the image below to view the scenario models.

Data last updated on 27 May 2020. The full presentation, including explanations of the scientific models, follows below.

Update slides (27 May 2020)

Update slides (12 May 2020)

Original scenario modelling presentation (5 May 2020)

Covid-19 Future Path Modelling pdf

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