How could the UK have an official ‘flu deaths “estimate” which is 360 times higher than actual deaths?
You know how it is when you hear we are all going to die horribly according to government or World Health Organisation “estimates” of a disease never previously considered a major public health problem?
Well nowadays when it comes to ‘flu, if an airplane falls out of the sky over the UK and 300 people die, officially they all died from ‘flu according to the UK’s Department of Health. Yep folks, not politburo propaganda speak of a communist dictatorship but the UK.
You might think – how can that be that true? How can we suddenly have a big problem – at least – according to “latest” government anonymous uncheckable “estimates“. [And by some “happy” coincidence it always seems to happen after the drug industry has some kind of drug claimed to treat the disease [if the drug trial data is to be believed]].
The method of calculation of the UK’s official 12,000 annual deaths “estimate” was confirmed by the UK’s Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson in the British Medical Journal: [UK Fakes Flu Death Numbers.] The true figures were no more than 33 Britons each year had died from flu over a 4 year period, despite the 12,000 annual officially “estimated” deaths claim.
To get the estimate, if more people die than “estimated” the UK Department of Health use the excess death figure as their annual flu deaths figure. So it does not matter what aircrash victims really die of – for official announcements in the press for the UK public – it was ‘flu.
So remember this when you hear claims like those of the US CDC that 36,000 Americans die annually from ‘flu or the UK Department of Health that 12,000 Britons die annually from ‘flu.
More recently we noted on CHS that the US CDC claimed an estimate of 100 times more measles deaths than expected from published figures for another developed country [ie. UK] and were vastly higher than figures for reported cases from the World Health Organisation: [US Centers for Disease Control Caught Lying About Disease [Yet Again – Yawn]].
So what did Dr Ben Goldacre’s BadScience Forum numerically challenged trolls do on a blog in a distant galaxy far far away and even further removed from reality? First they claimed the difference was because of a 3 year difference in the figures: the US CDC figures were on a web page last reviewed in 2009 whereas the WHO figures were from 2012.
Hang on there guys. A huge difference is because in 3 years the figures changed dramatically by orders of magnitude?
Well in fact no. Additionally it seems Dr Ben Goldacre’s BadScience Forum trolls lied about the basis of their claim to a 3 year difference. Well, Dr Goldacre does encourage the Forum’s trolls by saying pretty much anything goes [albeit he writes he “draws the line at kidnapping“].
The CDC web page [Overview of Measles Disease] provides no basis for a three year difference. The US CDC webpage had been updated only one month earlier.
Worse still, it looks like the claim to a three year difference was clearly and knowingly false when made. Whilst the US CDC webpage stated it was last reviewed in 2009 it stated clearly it had been updated on 12 September 2013:
Page last reviewed: August 31, 2009
Page last updated: September 12, 2013″
And that’s numberwang!
Dr Ben Goldacre’s whingeing BadScience Forum trolls headed up by James, a former unemployed barman and administrator [blogging as jdc325] also had some gripe about the figure of 1 in 25,000 as provided by the Department of Health for measles mortality rates. So here again just for the record is the exact quote as provided by the UK Department of Health in a FOIA response:
Death after measles – 1 in 25000 to 1 in 5000 depending on age
Miller CL. Deaths from measles in England and Wales, 1970-83. British Medical Journal. 1985; 290:443-4.”
Here is the deal. Dr Ben Goldacre’s BadScience Forum trolls jump up and down like excited three year olds as if this is all CHS’ fault. But what is really going on which they completely ignore is CHS writes an article about how government figures are faked, used to mislead and cannot be trusted, and with hard evidence demonstrating that: US Centers for Disease Control Caught Lying About Disease [Yet Again – Yawn]. The article includes an exact quote from the UK Department of Health. Dr Goldacre’s BadScience Forum trolls do not agree with the exactly quoted figure from the UK Department of Health which they claim on their reckoning incorrect [kind of the point of the CHS article]. Having then gone off and done “research” at the University of Google [where they seem to have received their qualifications] they assert CHS should have done that too. They do not at any time criticise the UK Department of Health for putting out incorrect information.
Dr Ben Goldacre’s BadScience Forum trolls do this kind of thing routinely. They claimed previously that a news report should not have been published because it reported and quoted a doctor in the national leading Children’s hospital in Pakistan [which was also part of the national science institute for the country] reporting half the children from a large area of Pakistan who contracted measles had been vaccinated.
Again, they did their University of Google research and claimed the story should not have been reported whereas it was quoting the doctor from this leading child health institution. Apparently for a news site to report that particular item of news was, according to the BadScience troll-spammers, “cherry-picking”. According to them that was because the reporter did not carry out an extensive review of all medical journal papers published on the topic. Ha!
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