Covid-19: Changes to Statistics

We are fully committed to supporting producers of statistics during this challenging time.

Producers have shown and continue to show great flexibility in adapting what they collect and publish to respond to this new environment.

As we adjust to changes in our society and the economy, our aim is for statistics to continue to be of high quality, to be trustworthy, and to be valuable in meeting the information needs of society to serve the public good.

We have published a package of measures to assist producers including:

  • guidance on factors that producers should consider when making changes to data collection, statistics production and release
  • statement outlining our position and expectations on the use of management information by government and other public bodies
  • guidance for statistical producers on suspending National Statistics status
  • setting out an approach to rapid regulatory reviews, potentially including National Statistics status, for any new outputs published by producers which inform the public about the coronavirus and its economic and social impacts.

We will support sensible changes to existing production practices.

 

During the Covid-19 outbreak, OSR has carried out rapid reviews of new official statistics that have been produced in response to the outbreak. This table provides easy access to information about OSR’s endorsements following those reviews.

Producer bodyStatisticsStatus (NS or OS)Link to published material
ONSCovid-19 statistics from the Opinions and Lifestyle SurveyOSLetter
ONSFaster Economic IndicatorsOSLetter
Welsh GovernmentWelsh Government Children and staff attendance at local authority settings in Wales during the COVID-19 pandemicOSLetter
Department for EducationAttendance in education and early years settings during the COVID-19 pandemicOSLetter
ONSCoronavirus (COVD-19) Infection SurveyExperimental StatisticsLetter
Department for TransportTransport statistics during the COVID-19 pandemicExperimental Official StatisticsLetter
Natural EnglandInterim indicators from the People and Nature Survey for EnglandExperimental StatisticsLetter
Welsh GovernmentNational Survey for WalesNSLetter
NHS EnglandDaily Covid-19 deaths in hospitals statisticsOSLetter
HMRCCoronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) statisticsExperimental StatisticsLetter
Department of Health and Social CareNHS Test and Trace Statistics (England)Letter
ONSTelephone-operated Crime Survey for England and WalesExperimental StatisticsLetter

This table notes exemptions to the normal practices of the Code of Practice for Statistics that OSR has agreed with statistical producer bodies in the light of the Covid-19 outbreak following OSR guidance.

Producer bodyStatisticsNature of exemptionDurationRelevant links if any
Office for National StatisticsMarket sensitive economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7am rather than 9.30am in the absence of media lock-insUntil further noticeLetter and reply
Welsh GovernmentKey economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7am rather than 9.30am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil further noticeLetter and reply
Scottish GovernmentKey economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7am rather than 9.30am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil further noticeLetter and reply
Northern Ireland Statistics and Research AgencyMarket sensitive economic statisticsPublish market sensitive statistics at 7am rather than 9.30am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil further noticeLetter and reply
HM TreasuryUK Official Holdings of International ReservesPublish market sensitive statistics at 7am rather than 9.30am to coordinate with ONS releasesUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
National Records of ScotlandWeekly death statisticsPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30am to allow for quality assuranceUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
Public Health ScotlandWeekly COVID-19 reportPublish at 12 noon rather than 9.30am in line with other related statisticsUntil further noticeLetter from Scott Heald
Reply from Ed Humpherson

Reply from Scott Heald

Welsh GovernmentChildren and staff attendance at local authority settings in Wales during the COVID-19 pandemicPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30amUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
Department of Health, Northern IrelandDaily COVID-19 statistics dashboardPublish at 2pm rather than 9.30amUntil further noticeLetter from Dr Eugene Mooney
Letter from Ed Humpherson
Department for EducationAttendance at education and childcare setting during coronavirus outbreakPublish statistics at noon rather than 9.30am to allow for quality assuranceUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCoronavirus (Covid-19) Infection Survey statisticsPublish at 12 noon rather than 9.30amUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
Office for National StatisticsCOVID-19 Infection SurveyPublish statistics at 11am on 31 July 2020 instead of 12pmOnce on 31 July 2020Letter and reply
Welsh GovernmentCOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish at 12 noon rather than 9.30amUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson
Department of Health NICOVID-19 Infection Survey ResultsPublish at 12 noon rather than 9.30amUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson

Official statistics that have been assessed to meet the highest standards of trustworthiness, quality and value expected by the Code of Practice for Statistics are assigned National Statistics status. This table lists those statistics that will continue to be produced but where, because of the Covid-19 outbreak, it has not been possible for the producer body to comply with the Code of Practice in full. In those cases National Statistics status has been suspended. We have issued guidance to help producers when considering suspension of National Statistics status.

Producer bodyStatisticsChangesDuration Relevant links if any
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local GovernmentLocal authority revenue expenditure and financing, England: 2020Data inconsistencies due to COVID-19 crisisOne yearLetter
Office for National StatisticsOverseas travel and tourism statisticsTemporary suspension of National Statistics designation due to COVID-19 crisisUntil further noticeLetter and Response
NISRANorthern Ireland Tourism StatisticsTemporarily remove National Statistics designation from statistics published for Quarter 1 2020 onwardsUntil further noticeLetter from Ed Humpherson

 

Statements:

Presenting estimates of R by government and allied bodies across the United Kingdom

Covid-19 Local Area Data

 

Other Key Correspondence:

Letter from Ed Humpherson to Mr Pengelly, regarding statistical information relating to COVID-19 in Northern Ireland  (April 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Steve Ellerd-Elliot: Universal Credit Management Information (April 2020)

Sir David Norgrove letter to Matt Hancock (May 2020) and Matt Hancock’s response  (May 2020)

Sir David Norgrove letter to Matt Hancock (June 2020) and Matt Hancock’s response ( June 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Jeremy Pocklington: Management Information on Rough Sleepers (June 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Roger Halliday: Use of COVID-19 prevalence rates by Scottish Government (July 2020)

Ed Humpherson response to Will Moy: COVID-19: test times response at PMQs 3 June 2020 (August 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Stephen Balchin: Publication of ad hoc statistics (September 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Baroness Dido Harding: Reasons for getting a COVID-19 test: Survey of regional and local testing sites (October 2020)

Ed Humpherson to Michael Brodie: Official Statistics: National flu and COVID-19 surveillance reports (October 2020)