Effective, real-time surveillance is key to the management of the Covid-19 pandemic. In what follows, we first set out a set of principles that may usefully guide real-time surveillance systems for emerging infectious diseases and discuss these in the context of Covid-19. We then briefly review a range of potential sources of data and describe in broad terms strategies for study design and data analysis.
Radar charts, also called web charts, spider charts or star charts, are often used to display various characteristics of a profile simultaneously. Whether it presents a tennis player’s statistics or a client’s preferences, the main outcome of a radar chart is a simple polygon, commonly known as a shape. This shape has specificities: it covers a surface, has sides of various lengths, has many different angles, is often colored, etc. The singularity of this shape is sure to help catch readers’ often limited attention. Before long, they are intrigued, trying to interpret the meaning of this geometric form.
Excess deaths – the number of those dying above the average of the past five years – is a crucial metric for assessing the lethality of Covid-19. It measures the immediate toll, both direct and indirect, that the virus, SARS-CoV-2, has exacted.
Much has been said about the demographic trends of Covid-19. It has been widely reported that deaths are more common in males; more common in the elderly; and more common amongst those with an “underlying health condition”. But to what extent is this the case? And how are these variables associated with each other?
Leicester made demographic history as the first city in England where the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community is the majority. And it is making history as the first city in England to re-enter lockdown after a surge in persons testing positive for SARS-CoV-2. Can Leicester turn this reversal into a triumph for local public health by rigorously documenting its SARS-CoV-2 transmission networks, and by using investigatory scientific methods to make new discoveries about asymptomatic infections and infectiousness? These are testing times.