Question from: County Councillor Gareth Ratcliffe Subject: Covid19 stats Hay area concerns
Can you help clarify the map that Powys County Council released yesterday showing that Hay and Talgarth are above the 50 to 1000 ratio in monitoring covid19 cases. This has put the area in the highest category. Whilst I welcome more local data, this is misleading as it makes the area look like it's at high risk. With an area under 10k population we only need 5 cases to be in high category. I'm sure you will agree with me this is not high. I accept we need to highlight to keep people engaged in fighting the virus but it can have the counter impact and ruin an already crumbling economy in the town and area.
Can you please clarify and reassure the community and any further information is given a sense check to ensure it does not impact negatively when not intended to?
Response by the Portfolio Holder:
Thank for your question in relation to the above.
The now common use of the number of cases of Coronavirus per 100k population over the previous 7 days does indeed represent a challenge for the more sparsely populated areas or when broken down into smaller geographic areas.
All local authorities are measured on this basis and whilst it is accepted that a small number of cases can have a significant impact on the measure for Hay and Talgarth, that is indeed true for all Powys localities.
We have attempted to balance the desire to provide localised information in a relevant manner so that is can be compared to nationally quoted standards.
There is no simple answer to this challenge and out of interest please may I refer you to the Public Health Wales Data which has used incidence deciles:-
We will take your comments on board for future release but please be assured that our sharing of data was to support recent public health messaging and nothing else.
The reality of use of these measure is that small numbers of cases in many of our localities will lead to Powys being in the red category.