Researchers reveal Isle of Wight R number for Coronavirus

Analysis compares the number of confirmed cases from local authorities and health boards over two-weeks to estimate the trend of the R number. Details for the Isle of Wight within

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With fears of a second wave of Coronavirus in the country, and the government trying to reduce the reproduction (R) number, research suggests the Island’s R is below one.

If the R number, the number of how many new people are infected by each case, is kept below one, it is believed the coronavirus pandemic will, in time, disappear.

However, if the R number rises the epidemic will grow — something the government is trying to avoid.

R number needs to consistently drop
The government’s roadmap to ease lockdown restrictions relies on the R number consistently falling and the number of cases and deaths dropping.

With more and more people heading out of the house on the Island, travelling to beaches and spending time outdoors — and from next week meeting in groups of six from different households — there is cause for concern that the R rate could rise and bring with it a second peak.

Now, new analysis compares the number of confirmed cases from local authorities and health boards over a two-week time frame to estimate the trend of the R number.

R number 0.42 this week
In the last two weeks before the data (from 12th to 26th May), confirmed coronavirus cases on the Isle of Wight increased by 40.

Latest data provided by researchers for Tuesday, 26th May showed the R rate to be 0.42, having fallen from 1.77 on 18th May, when seven new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed — the highest the R number had been since the beginning of April.

Sharing their findings on Deckzero, a crowd-sharing data platform, researchers said:

“This approximated value is not the instantaneous reproduction number.

“However, it does bear the same unit and trending as [the instantaneous reproduction number] and thus may offer a glimpse into how it might have changed during the last 14-day period.

“When cases are small, R will fluctuate more; however, this should not be treated as noise as the infection grows exponentially if undisrupted.”

Low number of confirmed cases
Compared to the rest of the country, the Isle of Wight has a relatively low number of cases, so this number may fluctuate.

In Portsmouth and Southampton, the analysis puts the R number at 1.21 and 0.75 respectively.

The most recent value of the R number in the UK is thought to be between 0.7 and 1.0.

As more restrictions are lifted, with schools set to open next week, it is vital the R number stays below 1.0 to stop the spread of new cases.

This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some alterations and additions may be been made by OnTheWight. Ed

Image: United Nations covid response under CC BY 2.0

Friday, 29th May, 2020 5:23pm



Filed under: Health, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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13 Comments on "Researchers reveal Isle of Wight R number for Coronavirus"

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An Isle of Wight R factor of 0.42 is truly amazing.

Which researchers calculated that value and what data did they use to determine it?

Where may we find this information please?


But without community testing we have no reliable figure for how many actually have the virus…

My age puts me in the high risk category, and I certainly am not going to relax my guard on these figures. When this all started, we were the Local Authority with the lowest number of case per capita, and being an Island, we could have remained that way, had rules been followed. Yes the R number is very important, if it can be accurately determined, which… Read more »

I absolutely agree, such a low R value seems promising but it depends on who the nameless ‘researchers’ are and where their data originated.

Unfortunately without identified provenance it lacks credibility.


These local statistics are invaluable in allowing us Islanders to follow the R number trends so as to make better decisions about when we feel safe to ease lockdown and when we need to tighten it. Are they being posted regularly on Deckzero, and how do we access this platform? When I tried, I got a lawnmower site!

One doesn’t need a degree in Mathematics to know that there’s a high probability of R rising above 1 when the flood gates open shortly with hoards of visitors allowed on our beaches. Younger folk are less at risk than older folk so they’re generally more gung ho and irresponsible than older folk at keeping the 2 metre social distancing rule. Where are the police hiding on… Read more »

LMAO, you guys need to learn how to Google. :)


No,only UK Dave… 2 shots, two misses


Won’t let me post a direct link so here goes:

Google “Directlink”. Click on the first result.
When the site loads click “Covid-19”, then “Local R-Value Tracker”

You can then search by local authority.


googling ‘directlink’ just gives garbage answers…


Oh, ok. WWW . DIRECTLINK . COM will take you there (obviously remove the spaces).


A global delivery company


Urgh, I’m going back to bed.