Viral Respiratory Diseases (Including Influenza and COVID-19) Data in Scotland

This publication was renamed on 12 October 2023 from Respiratory Infection Statistical Data in Scotland to Viral Respiratory Diseases (Including Influenza and COVID-19) Data in Scotland. This included the addition of 11 new datasets. For data files published prior to 12 October 2023, please see Archived - COVID-19 Statistical Data in Scotland.

This dataset provides information on the number and rate of new weekly confirmed respiratory cases (including COVID-19, influenza and other non-influenza respiratory pathogens) at Scotland, NHS Board and Council Area (where available) level.

This publication includes information on socio-demographic characteristics such as age, gender, and deprivation status for both cases and hospital admissions, along with trend data.

Data visualisation of Scottish COVID-19, influenza, and other respiratory pathogen cases is available on the Public Health Scotland - Covid 19 Scotland dashboard. Additional information can be found in the data dictionary for each dataset.

Tracking infectious respiratory diseases, including COVID-19 and influenza, is essential, especially in the winter when the disease burden can be highest. In Scotland, respiratory infection and associated morbidity are monitored using enhanced surveillance. This approach combines data from microbiological sampling and laboratory test results from community and hospital settings with data from syndromic surveillance of NHS 24 calls, primary care consultations for respiratory symptoms, hospital (including intensive care) admissions and other settings. The intelligence generated from surveillance of laboratory, syndromic and settings provide a comprehensive picture of current respiratory illness in Scotland.

The key non-influenza respiratory pathogens include adenovirus, seasonal coronaviruses (non-COVID-19), human metapneumovirus (HMPV), human parainfluenza virus (HPIV), Mycoplasma pneumoniae, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and rhinovirus. These mostly cause mild upper respiratory tract symptoms, such as the common cold, but infection can sometimes lead to more severe lower respiratory tract complications, especially in young children, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems. Symptoms may also include a variety of non-respiratory presentations.

Latest COVID-19 guidance from NHS Scotland, can be found here on NHS Inform.

Further information on coronavirus in Scotland is available on the Scottish Government – Coronavirus in Scotland page.

Data and Resources

Additional Info

Field Value
Source Electronic Communication of Surveillance in Scotland (ECOSS)
Author Public Health Scotland
Maintainer Public Health Scotland
Last Updated February 15, 2024, 09:31 (GMT)
Created November 23, 2023, 08:48 (GMT)
Contact Address Public Health Scotland, Gyle Square, 1 South Gyle Crescent, Edinburgh, EH12 9EB
Subject Acute Respiratory Infection, Influenza, COVID-19
Frequency Weekly
Time frame of data and timeliness Case numbers and rates, for the latest complete ISO week, are published weekly on a Thursday.
Coverage All tests processed by NHS laboratories in Scotland are reported to Public Health Scotland (PHS). Testing is carried out throughout the year.
Completeness Due to a lag in data received from labs, case numbers and rates for the latest week are provisional and may be subject to change in the next publication of data.
Accuracy All data is subject to validation and quality assurance processes. Case numbers may change retrospectively to include new data or updated information on previously reported data. Cases that have not appeared in a publication due to a lag in submition from labs are retrospectively added to their respective week in subsequent publications. A small number of cases may not be included in the latest publication of data if they are undergoing additional validation steps.
Concepts and definitions Number of new laboratory positive test results expressed as a rate per 100,000 Scottish population (mid-year estimates). Influenza (flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. There are two main types of influenza virus: Types A and B. The influenza A and B viruses that routinely spread in people (human influenza viruses) are responsible for seasonal flu epidemics each year. Current subtypes of influenza A viruses routinely found in people are influenza A(H1N1) and influenza A(H3N2) viruses. Currently circulating influenza B viruses belong to one of two lineages: B/Yamagata and B/Victoria.
Disclosure The PHS Statistical Disclosure Protocol is followed.
Revision statement These data are not subject to planned major revisions. However, the Clinical and Protecting Health Directorate of PHS aims to continually improve the interpretation of the data and therefore analysis methods are regularly reviewed and may be updated in the future.
Official statistics designation Official Statistics
Relevance and key uses of the statistics The data are used to gauge the start, peak and duration of the influenza season and describe the current impact and the severity of the influenza season in Scotland each winter. Such information allows comparison with prior influenza seasons and with current activity across the UK, Europe and globally.
Format csv
Language English

Weekly national respiratory infection and COVID-19 statistical report

COVID-19 & Respiratory Surveillance in Scotland interactive dashboard

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