This online calculator by UK scientists predicts how likely are you to die from COVID-19
This tool which is a part of a larger study, found that more than eight million people in the U.K. (almost 12% of the population) are at high-risk from COVID-19, and should follow strict guidelines to protect themselves. It also warned that if the lockdown is lifted too soon, 37,000 to 73,000 extra deaths could take place in the UK.
Part of a larger study, this online tool predicts a one-year mortality rate based on factors such as age, sex and underlying illnesses.
This free-to-use tool, along with predicting the risk of infection, also takes into account various elements such as strain on the health service.
The study, published in medical journal The Lancet, found that more than eight million people in the U.K. (almost 12% of the population) are at high-risk from COVID-19, and should follow strict guidelines to protect themselves. It also warned that if the lockdown is lifted too soon, 37,000 to 73,000 extra deaths could take place in the UK.
Currently with more than 225,000 COVID-19 cases, and more than 32,600 deaths, the United Kingdom has the second-highest number of fatalities in the world.
The Independent reported that scientists at University College London scoured age, sex, pre-existing conditions and other indirect factors, before using their specially designed calculator to predict COVID-19’s impact on “excess” or above-normal mortality rates over the course of a year. The study examined health records of 3.8 million people in the U.K., divided almost equally between women and men. It found that more than 20 per cent of those studied were at high-risk when it came to COVID-19.
Among that 20% who fall under the high-risk segment, the the one-year mortality rate was 4.46 per cent. Of the people who are high-risk when it comes to COVID-19, 13.7 per cent were older than 70, and 6.3 per cent were 70 or younger and had one underlying condition or more. The study found that, “Age and underlying conditions combined to influence background risk, varying markedly across conditions.”
The study also found that the risk from COVID-19 was five times higher for people with conditions like diabetes and heart disease.
“Using data modelling on a number of different scenarios, our findings show the mortality risk for these vulnerable groups increases significantly, and could lead to thousands of avoidable deaths. Our calculator is the first to give doctors, health experts and the public a personalised risk from Covid,” Lead researcher Dr. Amitava Banerjee told U.K. outlet The Sun.
Similar to India, though the UK has begun to ease its lockdown, the people are still confused as to what can and can't be done.
According to the study, in a full lockdown situation, even if COVID-19 has high relative impact on health systems, excess mortality over a year can be minimised. Conversely, the study reads, "with less rigorous and voluntary measures, we predict between 18,000 and 37,000 deaths." And these deaths would be on top of the deaths which have already taken place.
“These results signal the need for sustained stringent suppression measures as well as sustained efforts to target those at highest risk because of underlying conditions with a range of preventive interventions. Countries should assess the overall (direct and indirect) effects of the pandemic on excess mortality,” the study reads.