COVID-19: Official gov't site scraps reports in view of end-year stats

"In view of the sustained favourable course of the pandemic, the website, which was created for the intensive phase of the pandemic, will be closed from 1 January," the website said on Wednesday. Official information on the outbreak will then be made available to the press via state newswire MTI, it added. Let's see that "favourable course".

Hungary's official Covid statistics are hectic but at least there's a consistency in this roller-coaster ride of unreliable data. But hey, no complaints, if that's what we have to work with, we'll go with the flow. To underpin the volatility of the figures it's enough to take a look at either the table below or, better yet, to the charts that follow.

State-run newswire MTI is generally available only to the press, and if the key statistical data continue to be provided to MTI, it is not clear why the official government website cannot publish a single Covid report per week. This further reduces transparency and makes it more difficult for the public and the press to keep track of the developments in the pandemic.


As regards the total number of Covid deaths, Hungary continues to beat everyone in the region. In terms of deaths per one million population Hungary is 3rd in the world, with 5,042 fatalities behind Bulgaria (5,566) and Peru (6,475).

Here are a few charts about the key indicators that show the main developments in the pandemic since mid-May:


The 'On ventilator / In hospital' ratio was falling constantly since May, although there was a spike in late August. The ratio has been steadily rising since mid-Sept and reached 1.9% in mid-October, only to rather inexplicably drop to 1.1% after and then jump back to 1.8% and drop abruptly again to 1.3% two weeks ago. It has jumped to 2.5% from 1.5%, but the downward trend remains intact.

The following chart shows the daily average number of Covid deaths as a percentage of Covid patients in hospital and on ventilator. There is a downward trend in the former and a slight upward trend in the latter. The former ratio has not been this high since mid-August, and even then it was a fluke caused by an inexplicable 62% drop in the number of hospitalised coronavirus patients, which compares with a 63% plummet now.

The following chart uses an indicator conceived by Balázs Pártos, an enthusiast with a medical background who was keeping a very close eye on the pandemic and made rather accurate estimates based on the CFR/OCC ratio. CFR = [deaths / confirmed cases], OCC = [deaths / (deaths + recoveries)]. This may be one of the best (simple) indicators as to where the pandemic is headed.

Presents vs. shots

A total of 3,159 COVID-19 shots have been administered in Hungary over the past seven days, down 51% from 6,513 a week ago, which follows a 1% w/w rise.

The daily average fell to 451 doses from 930 a week ago.

"In Hungary, the outbreak is currently at a moderate level, due in part to the high level of vaccination," said.

Well, here's a chart on the "high level of vaccination". The following vaccination rate data should be taken with a pinch of salt. The shots do offer good protection from severe illness and death, but their power to shield you from contracting the virus depends greatly on the type of vaccine - messenger RNA (mRNA), vector, protein subunit vaccine - the recipient's immune system (age, weight, underlying diseases, etc.), the time that elapsed since the last jab was administered, and obviously the number of shots received and immunity gained by infection. It would take a deeper look to determine actually how many Hungarians are well-protected against COVID-19.


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