National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

2021

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Publication of Public Records (Scotland) Act 2011 Annual Report for 2021

Thursday, 13 Jan 2022
Image representing front cover of Keeper’s Public Records Scotland Act Annual report

The Keeper’s Annual Report for 2021, published under the Public Records (Scotland) Act 2011, has been laid in the Scottish Parliament. It reflects the eighth year of activity since the Act was implemented in January 2013.

The Keeper’s Annual Report for 2021 is available to download. The main aim of the Act is to improve the quality of record keeping in approximately 250 named Scottish public authorities. It requires authorities to submit records management plans to the Keeper for agreement.

We are pleased to report that the voluntary Progress Update Review mechanism, despite being impacted by the challenges posed by COVID-19, remained popular among colleagues. Fifty four submission were assessed and Reports delivered to colleagues for internal reporting purposes.

In total, we have now agreed 246 Records Management Plans and sent 277 invitations to authorities since the Act came into force in January 2013.

In a year when COVID-19 impacted all of society, it has become increasingly obvious just how important good standards of public record keeping are, since records will tell the enduring story of how public authorities have responded during the pandemic, informing our understanding both now and in the future.

I am pleased to say that the Act and my assessment team have been key to supporting ongoing improvements in record keeping within the Scottish public sector during this challenging time. Our engagement with authorities has helped to further promote the benefits of good records management and remains central to the Act’s success. Plans agreed and feedback from engagement demonstrates good practice is being adopted and that the Act continues to promote a new culture around record keeping.

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Deaths involving COVID-19 Week 50: 13 - 19 December 2021

Wednesday, 22 Dec 2021
covid news release image

As at 19 December 2021, 12,372 deaths have been registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate, according to statistics published today by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

In the week 13 – 19 December, 68 deaths were registered that mentioned COVID-19 on the death certificate, a decrease of 17 deaths from the previous week.

16 deaths were aged under 65, 14 were aged 65-74 and there were 38 deaths in people aged 75 or over.

Glasgow City (13 deaths), City of Edinburgh (7 deaths) and South Lanarkshire (7 deaths) had the highest numbers of deaths at council level. In total, 22 (out of 32) council areas had at least one death last week.

51 deaths were in hospitals, 6 were in care homes and 11 were at home or in a non-institutional setting.

Pete Whitehouse, Director of Statistical Services, said:

“The latest figures show that last week there were 68 deaths where COVID-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. This is 17 fewer deaths than the previous week.”

“The number of deaths from all causes registered in Scotland in this week was 1,339, which is 103, or 8%, more than the five year average.” 

The publication Deaths involving coronavirus (COVID-19) in Scotland is available on the NRS website.

graph showing deaths per week involving covid-19

Background

NRS figures include deaths where ‘suspected’ or ‘probably’ COVID-19 appears on the death certificate.

Data for 2021 are provisional and subject to change in future weekly publications. The data will be finalised in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775-027-380
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Deaths involving COVID-19 Week 49: 6 - 12 December 2021

Wednesday, 15 Dec 2021
covid news release image

As at 12 December 2021, 12,303 deaths have been registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate, according to statistics published today by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

In the week 6 to 12 December, 84 deaths were registered that mentioned COVID-19 on the death certificate, a decrease of seven deaths from the previous week.

17 deaths were aged under 65, 16 were aged 65-74 and there were 51 deaths in people aged 75 or over. 44 were female and 40 were male.

There were 11 deaths in Glasgow City, eight in Aberdeenshire, and eight in Fife. In total, 23 council areas (out of 32) had at least one death involving COVID-19 last week..

64 were in hospitals, 11 were in care homes, and nine were at home or a non-institutional setting.

Our monthly analysis shows that the age-standardised rate of COVID-related deaths was lower in November 2021 (95 per 100,000 people) compared to October 2021 (126 per 100,000 people).

Pete Whitehouse, Director of Statistical Services, said:

“The latest figures show that last week there were 84 deaths where COVID-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. This is seven fewer deaths than the previous week.”

“The number of deaths from all causes registered in Scotland in this week was 1,314, which is 174, or 15%, more than the five year average.”

Adverse effects of vaccination against COVID-19 were recorded as the underlying cause of five deaths in Scotland since the pandemic began. One additional death occurred in November 2021 where an adverse effect was mentioned on the death certificate, although it was not the underlying cause of death. By 30 November 2021 statistics from Public Health Scotland state that 4.4 million people had been given at least one vaccine dose.

Of the 12,210 deaths involving COVID-19 between March 2020 and November 2021, 93% (11,326 people) had at least one pre-existing condition.  Just under one quarter of people whose death involved COVID-19 had dementia or Alzheimer’s disease.  

The publication Deaths involving coronavirus (COVID-19) in Scotland is available on the NRS website.

graph showing deaths per week involving covid-19

Background

NRS figures include deaths where ‘suspected’ or ‘probable’ COVID-19 appears on the death certificate.

Data for 2021 are provisional and subject to change in future weekly publications. The data will be finalised in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775-027-380
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Quarter 3 Deaths 15% above average

Tuesday, 14 Dec 2021
Demographic Statistics News Release Image

15,145 deaths were registered in Scotland between 1 July and 30 September 2021, according to figures released today by National Records of Scotland.

This was 15.3% higher than the average number of deaths (13,147) for quarter 3 in the five year period of 2015-2019.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) was the underlying cause of 789 deaths during quarter 3.

Today’s figures when compared with the average for 2015-2019 show:

The number of cancer deaths rose by 2.9 per cent to 4,202

The number of deaths from coronary heart disease rose by 10.7 per cent to 1,651

The number of deaths from dementia and Alzheimer’s disease rose by 13.5 per cent to 1,484

Deaths from respiratory diseases fell by 2.7 per cent to 1,306

There were 906 deaths from cerebrovascular disease (an increase of 3.2 per cent)

There were 12,548 births registered in Scotland in quarter 3. This is 9% lower than the quarter 3 average of 13,788 over the five years 2015-2019.

Julie Ramsay, Vital Events Statistician, said:

"This year’s quarter 3 deaths are 15.3% higher than the five year average.

Together with the low number of births, today’s statistics reveal a widening gap between births and deaths.”

The publication Births, Deaths and other Vital Events - Quarterly Figures and an infographic summary is available on this website.

Marriages in Scotland have almost returned to pre-pandemic numbers. There were 10,540 marriages in quarter 3, only 1% fewer than the quarter 3 average for 2015 - 2019.

There were 335 same-sex marriages, a decrease from the five year average of 384, whilst same-sex civil partnerships increased to 32, compared to an average of 21 for quarter 3.

Civil partnerships were made available to all couples in June this year, and of the 248 civil partnerships registered in the third quarter of 2021, 216 involved mixed-sex couples.

Background

National Records of Scotland (NRS) is a non-ministerial department of the devolved Scottish Administration. It is responsible for producing statistics on Scotland’s population.

The full publication, births, deaths and other vital events – third quarter 2021, includes figures for NHS Boards and local authority areas. Breakdowns of these figures can be found under “Data and Charts”.

Figures are provisional and might be subject to further revision. Figures for 2021 will be finalised when the annual vital events reference tables are published in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to: 
Donna Green – 07775 027 380
NRS Communications
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Deaths involving COVID-19 Week 48: 29 November - 5 December 2021

Wednesday, 8 Dec 2021
covid news release image

As at 5 December 2021, 12,216 deaths have been registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate, according to statistics published today by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

In the week 29 November to 5 December, 88 deaths were registered that mentioned COVID-19 on the death certificate, a decrease of 10 deaths from the previous week.

22 deaths were aged under 65, 16 were aged 65-74, and there were 50 deaths in people aged 75 or over.

Glasgow City (12 deaths), Falkirk (7 deaths) and North Lanarkshire (7 deaths) had the highest numbers of deaths at council level. In total, 26 (out of 32) council areas had at least one death last week.

75 deaths were in hospitals, 4 were in care homes, and 9 were at home or in a non-institutional setting.

Pete Whitehouse, Director of Statistical Services, said:

“The latest figures show that last week there were 88 deaths where COVID-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. This is 10 fewer deaths than the previous week.”

“The number of deaths from all causes registered in Scotland in this week was 1,314, which is 184, or 16%, more than the five year average.” 

The publication Deaths involving coronavirus (COVID-19) in Scotland is available on the NRS website.

graph showing deaths per week involving covid-19

Background

NRS figures include deaths where ‘suspected’ or ‘probable’ COVID-19 appears on the death certificate.

Data for 2021 are provisional and subject to change in future weekly publications. The data will be finalised in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775-027-380
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Deaths involving COVID-19 Week 47: 22 - 28 November 2021

Wednesday, 1 Dec 2021
covid news release image

As at 28 November 2021, 12,127 deaths have been registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate, according to statistics published today by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

In the week 22 to 28 November, 97 deaths were registered that mentioned COVID-19 on the death certificate, an increase of one death from the previous week.

18 deaths were aged under 65, 34 were aged 65-74 and there were 45 deaths in people aged 75 or over. 55 were male and 42 were female.

Fife (11 deaths), Glasgow City (10 deaths) and South Lanarkshire (8 deaths) had the highest numbers of deaths at council level. In total, 26 (out of 32) council areas had at least one death last week.

82 deaths were in hospitals, 6 were in care homes and 9 were at home or in a non-institutional setting.

Pete Whitehouse, Director of Statistical Services, said:

“The latest figures show that last week there were 97 deaths where COVID-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. This is one more death than the previous week.”

“The number of deaths from all causes registered in Scotland in this week was 1,270, which is 140, or 12%, more than the five year average.” 

The publication Deaths involving coronavirus (COVID-19) in Scotland is available on the NRS website.

gaph showing deaths per week involving covid-19

Background

NRS figures include deaths where ‘suspected’ or ‘probable’ COVID-19 appears on the death certificate.

Data for 2021 are provisional and subject to change in future weekly publications. The data will be finalised in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775-027-380
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Response to Audit Scotland report

Tuesday, 30 Nov 2021

Responding to today's Audit Scotland report Paul Lowe, Registrar General and Chief Executive of National Records of Scotland (NRS), said:

“Audit Scotland’s report highlights the significant risks that the pandemic posed to the delivery of Scotland’s Census in March 2021. NRS could not have compensated for a significant reduction in response rates due to the pandemic, or readily re-run the census if that occurred.

“In 2020 these risks prompted NRS to recommend to Scottish Ministers to delay the Census for a year, this was agreed.

“Additional costs were incurred as a result of the delay and it is right that the public are made aware of the full impact of the pandemic.

“The report confirms that NRS is taking appropriate action to manage the challenges associated with a programme of this scale and complexity and that we are in a strong position to deliver a successful census next year.”

Further information

A detailed options assessment was carried out by NRS during 2020 to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the planning and delivery of Scotland’s Census. The assessment concluded that any options to deliver the census in 2021 would represent a significant risk to achieving the high quality of data required.

Important considerations at that time included the impact of Covid restrictions that might be in place during the census collection, the risk of a significantly reduced response rate, and pandemic related issues preventing normal planning discussions with organisations such as Local Government, the NHS and other public bodies.

The census provides a unique opportunity to gather high quality and information about Scotland’s population, which informs the future delivery of public services, significant infrastructure programmes and major public investment decisions for many years to come.

The NRS Annual Report and Accounts for 2020 - 2021 has been laid before the Scottish Parliament today.

 

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Homeless Deaths 2020

Tuesday, 30 Nov 2021
Demographic Statistics News Release Image

An estimated 256 people died while experiencing homelessness in Scotland in 2020, according to new figures published by National Records of Scotland.  This was an increase of 40 deaths when compared to the previous year.

The report includes a monthly breakdown which shows the number of deaths was consistently higher during the months of May to September 2020 than in previous years.

Comparable figures for England and Wales are not yet available for 2020.   Previous figures show that Scotland’s rate of homeless deaths was the highest among GB countries in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

West Dunbartonshire, Inverclyde and South Ayrshire had the highest rates of homeless deaths within Scotland while six local authority areas had no deaths. It should be noted that deaths are sometimes recorded outside of the local authority where a person had applied for homelessness support. For example if they were placed in temporary accommodation in another local authority area or they were in hospital at the time of their death.

Head of Vital Events, Julie Ramsay, said:

“While these statistics help our understanding of this issue, it’s important to understand these figures are currently experimental and the methodology is under development.

“The estimated number of people dying while experiencing homelessness has risen consistently over the past three years. Improvements to the data sources and the ability to identify whether a person was homeless may partly explain some of this increase since 2017.

“The figures show people experiencing homelessness dying at younger ages than the population as a whole. The most common age bracket for men dying while homeless is 45-54 and for women it is 35-44. Most of those who died (77%) were male.

“More than half of homeless deaths (59%) were drug-related.  Eight per cent were due to circulatory diseases (such as heart disease and stroke) and five per cent due to cancers. There were no deaths where the underlying cause was COVID-19.”

Background

The National Records of Scotland (NRS) is responsible for producing statistics on Scotland’s population.

The full report and an infographic for Homeless Deaths 2020 is available on our website.

These are experimental figures. Establishing an accurate number is hard because not all people who die while experiencing homelessness have their lack of permanent home recorded on their death registration record. The estimated number of deaths is established by examining death registration records to find people who were either in temporary accommodation or were sleeping rough before they died and adding to this a conservative estimated figure based on sampling. The probability is the true figure is higher. The methodology is explained further in the report on our website.  

Official statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff. General information about population statistics can be accessed in the About our Statistics section of the NRS website.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Susie Rose at [email protected]  or by calling 07500 463452

Further information about the statistics is available from:
Statistics Customer Services                                
Tel: 0131 314 4299
E-mail: [email protected]

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Just over 7% of Scotland's population are non-British nationals

Thursday, 25 Nov 2021
Demographic Statistics News Release Image

National Records of Scotland published new figures today which estimate that in the year to mid-2021, 7.4% of Scotland’s population (397,000 people) were non-British nationals.

58% of non-British nationals living in Scotland in the year to mid-2021 were from the EU.

The council areas with the largest proportion of residents with a non-British nationality were City of Edinburgh (20%), Aberdeen City (18%), Dundee City (12%), and Glasgow City (12%).

The full publication ‘Population by Country of Birth and Nationality, Scotland, July 2020 to June 2021’ can be accessed on the NRS website. This includes information on the number of non-British nationals and non-UK born people living in Scotland and each council area. 

Background

These estimates are sourced from the Annual Population Survey (APS) so there is sampling variability and a degree of uncertainty with the results.

A new weighting method has been introduced to the data used in this publication. For this reason breakdowns of population estimates below the EU and non-EU level are less reliable. More information can be found in the main report and metadata file on this website.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) have also today published estimates for Population by Country of Birth and Nationality for the UK as a whole for the year to mid-2021. These are available on the ONS website.

This publication provides estimates of the number of non-British nationals and the non-UK born population living in Scotland in the year to mid-2021. They are not directly comparable with estimates of migration flows. For statistics relating to migration flows (the number of people moving to or from Scotland over a period of time) please visit the NRS migration flows tables.

For statistics and commentary on the population as a whole, National Records of Scotland’s mid-year population estimates for mid-2020 were published on 25 June 2021, and contain information about all aspects of population change, including migration.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07949 441311
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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Deaths involving COVID-19 Week 46: 15 - 21 November 2021

Wednesday, 24 Nov 2021
covid news release image

As at 21 November 2021, 12,028 deaths have been registered in Scotland where the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was mentioned on the death certificate, according to statistics published today by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

In the week 15 to 21 November, 94 deaths were registered that mentioned COVID-19 on the death certificate, a decrease of 22 deaths from the previous week.

17 deaths were of people aged under 65, 16 were aged 65-74 and there were 61 deaths in people aged 75 or over. 50 deaths were male and 44 were female.

Glasgow City (13 deaths), Falkirk (8 deaths) and Fife (7 deaths) had the highest numbers of deaths at council level. In total, 28 (out of 32) council areas had at least one death last week.

69 deaths were in hospitals, 10 were in care homes, 14 were at home or in a non-institutional setting, and one death was in another institutional setting.

Pete Whitehouse, Director of Statistical Services, said:

“The latest figures show that last week there were 94 deaths where COVID-19 was mentioned on the death certificate. This is 22 fewer deaths than the previous week.”

“The number of deaths from all causes registered in Scotland in this week was 1,265, which is 126, or 11%, more than the five year average.” 

The publication Deaths involving coronavirus (COVID-19) in Scotland is available on the NRS website.

Graph showing deaths per week involving covid-19

Background

NRS figures include deaths where ‘suspected’ or ‘probable’ COVID-19 appears on the death certificate.

Data for 2021 are provisional and subject to change in future weekly publications. The data will be finalised in summer 2022.

Media enquiries should be directed to:
Donna Green
NRS Communications
Tel: 07775-027-380
Email: [email protected]

Further information about the statistics is available from:
NRS Customer Services
Email: [email protected]

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