A NEW map released by researchers at a top UK university reveals how Herefordshire could be affected by a second wave of coronavirus.

Experts from Oxford University have created an interactive map which shows hotspots that could be adversely affected by a second wave of cases, if there is one.

At-risk regions have been identified based on the number of ‘vulnerable’ people and available hospital resources.

And it also considers data on population age, density, social deprivation and density.

Infection rates are assumed as constant across age groups. Hospital capacity is calculated relative to the number of hospital beds available under normal circumstances.


The map shows that Herefordshire could be hard-hit, with 9.3 hospitalisations per 1,000 people in ‘general care’ and 3.2 people in critical care.

In Herefordshire, the critical care capacity is six beds and the map predicts that just over three of these could be taken up by coronavirus patients.

Hereford Times: Picture: University of OxfordPicture: University of Oxford

Meanwhile, the worst hit region in Wales could be Powys, which borders Herefordshire, researchers say.

According to the report, published in BMC Medicine: "We estimate specific pressure points where Covid-19 demand is likely to outstrip the baseline local supply.

"This includes rural areas in Wales as well as the North East and South West of England where high expected hospitalisation rates combine with relatively low bed capacity.

“Importantly, these areas are often more isolated and further away from alternative hospital services."

A link to the map can be found here - https://livedataoxford.shinyapps.io/COVID19-DemRisk/

The Leverhulme Centre for Demographic Science dashboard is designed to add to the UK government's test and trace programme by highlighting which regions and local areas are most likely to suffer disproportionate infections and hospital demand if an outbreak occurs.

Given the constantly evolving situation, it also allows users to adjust for changing infection rates and hospital resource levels.