Queensland COVID-19 Data Compared with Similar-Sized Populations (an amateur pre-border opening baseline)

This is a December 2021 update to data presented in an August 2020 presentation and blog post called Liaison in the Time of #COVID19. It is worth doing it now, I reckon, because the borders will open in a couple of weeks, and Queensland will become one of those rare places who have had the luxury of successfully suppressing the pandemic long enough to allow the population to be vaccinated. Well, those who trust and follow the science, that is.

As noted on previous blog posts [here & here], Queensland’s population is much bigger than Australia’s smaller states/territories (which are all well-under 3 million), but falls a long way short of Australia’s two largest states (which are both well-over 6 million).

So, on population alone (ie: with cavalier disregard to geography, housing density, culture or climate) it is better to compare the 5 million-ish Queensland population to the 5 million-ish populations of Ireland, New Zealand, Norway and Singapore.

Please interrogate the comparative data collated in the table below.

IrelandNew ZealandQueenslandNorwaySingapore
Population 5 011 5005 126 3005 236 1725 415 1665 450 000
Total COVID-19 Cases573 90511 7232 130269 433266 049
Active COVID-19 Cases*6 00816*12 255
COVID-19 Cases in Hospital5786114246993
COVID-19 Cases in ICU117*06962
COVID-19 Deaths5 6522271 092726
% 1st Dose COVID-19 Vaccine91.319486.578.796
% 2nd Dose COVID-19 Vaccine89.778776.471.196
Data as @ 01/12/21
* = number not reported online [][][][][] vaccine % of eligible people (ie: 12yo +)

I do not take my good fortune of living and working in Queensland for the last two years for granted.

It is important to reinforce the obvious: this data comparison is not some sort of macabre competition. The death stats alone remind us that COVID-19 is not a game – as of 01/12/21 WHO report 262,178,403 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 5,215,745 deaths. On a brighter note, WHO report that as of 28 November 2021 a total of 7,772,799,316 vaccine doses have been administered.

Think Global. Act Local.

Now, let’s look at how we have been faring in FNQ.

As of 01/12/21 Cairns and Hinterland has had 75 COVID-19 cases (none currently), and no deaths . We have been incredibly fortunate.

As of 01/12/21 over 177 000 vaccine doses have been administered in Cairns and Hinterland [source], but there is a bit of variation between the local government areas – as below [source]:

% 1st Dose COVID-19 Vaccine% 2nd Dose COVID-19 Vaccine
Cairns87.9 76.0
Cassowary Coast (Innisfail)85.371.0
Douglas85.575.3
Mareeba75.663.0
Tablelands (Atherton)84.572.5
Yarrabah63.243.5
FNQ vaccination rates of people aged 15+ as @ 28/11/21

Shaded part of map = these LGAs: Cairns, Cassowary Coast, Douglas, Mareeba, Tablelands, Yarrabah.

So What?

I don’t have the qualifications to tell you what all this data means. I certainly don’t have the skills or qualifications to use it to predict future data.

However, I do have the skills to collate and report data from reliable sources.

I intend to revisit this data before I shut down the meta4RN blog in September 2022, and compare how we fare after the borders open compared to the December 2021 baseline data collated above.

Data Sources 

FNQ Data
COVID-19 vaccination – Geographic vaccination rates – LGA https://www.health.gov.au/resources/collections/covid-19-vaccination-geographic-vaccination-rates-lga

Queensland
Population https://www.qgso.qld.gov.au/statistics/theme/population/population-estimates/state-territories/qld-population-counter
COVID Cases & Vaccines https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19/current-status/urgent-covid-19-update

New Zealand
Population https://www.stats.govt.nz/topics/population 
COVID Cases https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/diseases-and-conditions/covid-19-novel-coronavirus/covid-19-data-and-statistics/covid-19-current-cases
COVID Vaccines https://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/diseases-and-conditions/covid-19-novel-coronavirus/covid-19-data-and-statistics/covid-19-vaccine-data 

Ireland 
Population https://www.cso.ie/en/releasesandpublications/ep/p-pme/populationandmigrationestimatesapril2021/ 
COVID Cases https://covid19ireland-geohive.hub.arcgis.com 
COVID Vaccines https://covid19ireland-geohive.hub.arcgis.com/pages/vaccinations 

Norway
Population https://www.ssb.no/en/
COVID Cases https://www.vg.no/spesial/corona/
COVID Vaccines https://www.vg.no/spesial/corona/vaksinering/norge/ 

Singapore 
Population https://www.singstat.gov.sg/modules/infographics/population
COVID Cases https://covidsitrep.moh.gov.sg
COVID Vaccines https://www.moh.gov.sg/covid-19/vaccination 

End

As always, feedback is welcome via the comments section below.

Paul McNamara, 2 December 2021

Short URL: meta4RN/baseline

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