Coronavirus, what happens next

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bobscott
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Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby bobscott » Fri May 15, 2020 1:12 pm

Kilkis wrote: Having said that I think the main problem in the UK was slow political decision making.

Warwick


Now there I would agree with you.

Civil Servants MUST abide by the rules and procedures. If they go outside that, they are breaking the law and the moaners and groaners about the Civil Service would be baying for blood. Change the rules? Change the procedures? By all means, but change them; don't encourage transgression. So who could do that? (Answers on the back of a used postage stamp please!). Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

bobscott
Posts: 2849
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 5:36 pm
Location: Kokkino Horio

Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby bobscott » Fri May 15, 2020 1:14 pm

bobscott wrote:
Kilkis wrote: Having said that I think the main problem in the UK was slow political decision making.

Warwick


Now there I would agree with you.

Civil Servants MUST abide by the rules and procedures. If they go outside that, they are breaking the law and the moaners and groaners about the Civil Service would be baying for blood. Change the rules? Change the procedures? By all means, but change them; don't encourage transgression. So who could do that? (Answers on the back of a used postage stamp please!). Bob.



See? It's easy! I managed to change my rule in the space of a few hours!!! But then again, it was MY decision. Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Kamisiana
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Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby Kamisiana » Fri May 15, 2020 1:50 pm


Kilkis
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Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby Kilkis » Fri May 15, 2020 2:14 pm

bobscott wrote:...Civil Servants MUST abide by the rules and procedures. If they go outside that, they are breaking the law ...


I'm not sure that is totally accurate, Bob. I agree that not obeying the rules would be breaking the law. The rules tend to be written for a purpose. Procedures are simply particular mechanisms that ensure the rules are met. There may be many alternative procedures that would satisfy the rules and, given different circumstances, may produce better results than the usual procedures. Unfortunately the procedures tend to get institutionalised and then there is no need to think about the underlying rules. If you follow the procedure the rules will be met. When circumstances change there is a need to develop new procedures that still satisfy the rules but work better in the new circumstances. I don't think the civil service is very good at doing that and I think the NHS procurement section is an example of them not doing it very well.

Warwick

YoMo2
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Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby YoMo2 » Fri May 15, 2020 4:46 pm

bobscott wrote:
Kilkis wrote: Having said that I think the main problem in the UK was slow political decision making.

Warwick


Now there I would agree with you.

Civil Servants MUST abide by the rules and procedures. If they go outside that, they are breaking the law and the moaners and groaners about the Civil Service would be baying for blood. Change the rules? Change the procedures? By all means, but change them; don't encourage transgression. So who could do that? (Answers on the back of a used postage stamp please!). Bob.


And that demonstrates my point exactly. "People are dying, but we couldn't possibly adapt the rules to get things done".

Andrew

Kilkis
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Location: Near Chania

Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby Kilkis » Sat May 16, 2020 12:28 pm

Guy M wrote:The only measure worth looking at is excess deaths over time...


While still basically agreeing that excess deaths will be the best way to do country-to-country comparisons when the whole pandemic has unwound, I did get some information from a Greek friend last night that confirms comparing just COVID-19 death figures is meaningful. Greece is reporting deaths in all settings, i.e. hospitals care/nursing homes and the community, which is also what the UK is now doing. They are including all deaths where infection with COVID-19 was recorded, even if the death was not caused directly by COVID-19.

I think that means that COVID-19 death figures for the UK and Greece can be compared, obviously scaling for population size. Because the number of cases and deaths per million population has been so much lower in Greece, COVID-19 has had a much less serious impact on the healthcare system overall and so I think non-COVID-19 treatments have been able to carry on more normally in Greece than in the UK. If I am correct, the contribution to excess deaths from failure to treat other complaints should be much lower in Greece than the UK, although I am sure there will be some excess deaths in Greece from this cause.

I get a strong feeling that the UK government will come to rue the day they said that they should be judged on excess deaths when the pandemic has run its course. I fear that they are not going to be far from the top of the list.

Warwick

PS As an aside one of the people on the question time panel on Thursday night was a scientific/medical advisor to the Scottish Assembly on COVID-19. At one point she was asked her opinion of which countries had done well and Greece was included in the list along with the usual candidates like South Korea, New Zealand, Norway etc. In her opinion no relaxation of lockdown at all should be implemented until test, trace and isolate was fully operational.

PPS After several days with no new cases at all, South Korea recently opened up an area of Seoul that had been closed because it is full of bars and nightclubs where large numbers of people normally congregate. There was an increase in the number of daily cases up to around 20 to 30 per day. They think this was caused by either a single active case visiting many venues in the club scene area or possibly 2 or 3 active cases. Within a matter of a couple of days they had traced and tested over 10,000 contacts. The UK is currently running at between 3,000 and 4,000 new cases per day with very little relaxation of lockdown. What test trace and isolate capability is needed to effectively deal 3,000 new cases per day if you need to be able to trace and test 10,000 contacts because of 20 new cases? It is also worth noting that South Korea has a much more extensive tracking system than the UK will ever have. As well as an App that records location, either from the phone's GPS system or, if that is disabled, triangulation from cellular phone masts, they also use facial recognition software on surveillance cameras, credit card transactions etc. In addition they publish maps showing routes taken by positive cases that the public can view and avoid those areas until they have been disinfected.

bobscott
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Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby bobscott » Sat May 16, 2020 12:53 pm

YoMo2 wrote:
bobscott wrote:
Kilkis wrote: Having said that I think the main problem in the UK was slow political decision making.

Warwick


Now there I would agree with you.

Civil Servants MUST abide by the rules and procedures. If they go outside that, they are breaking the law and the moaners and groaners about the Civil Service would be baying for blood. Change the rules? Change the procedures? By all means, but change them; don't encourage transgression. So who could do that? (Answers on the back of a used postage stamp please!). Bob.


And that demonstrates my point exactly. "People are dying, but we couldn't possibly adapt the rules to get things done".

Andrew


I do take your point, and i suppose I am objecting to the blanket use of 'civil service'. Any rules-based organisation has a hierarchy and I can well imagine your average Exec Officer, up to Principal, trying to get the 'top dogs' to understand about the need to change the rules, being dismissed in terms of 'above your pay grade sonny!' Even worse for the clerical grades - they aren't supposed to have ideas, just do the job, take the pay and b****r off home at clocking off time! It happens. I know, it has happened to me more than once. Sometimes they just don't want to listen to mere mortals who spend all day dealing with the situation! Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

YoMo2
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Joined: Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:07 am
Location: Milatos, Lasithi

Re: Coronavirus, what happens next

Postby YoMo2 » Sun May 17, 2020 8:09 am

bobscott wrote:......I do take your point, and i suppose I am objecting to the blanket use of 'civil service'. Any rules-based organisation has a hierarchy and I can well imagine your average Exec Officer, up to Principal, trying to get the 'top dogs' to understand about the need to change the rules, being dismissed in terms of 'above your pay grade sonny!' Even worse for the clerical grades - they aren't supposed to have ideas, just do the job, take the pay and b****r off home at clocking off time! It happens. I know, it has happened to me more than once. Sometimes they just don't want to listen to mere mortals who spend all day dealing with the situation! Bob.


Fair enough. Yes, I was generalising, and I don't imagine every single civil servant is completely lacking in initiative. It just frustrates me to see some of the floundering about. You too, it seems.

Andrew


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