Simple Microsoft Excel mistake results in 16,000 COVID-19 ‘lost’ cases in the United Kingdom


Microsoft Excel sheet error results in 16,000 COVID-19 ‘lost’ cases in the United Kingdom

As if the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic was not enough, now United Kingdom citizens are facing another danger from COVID-19. Their government lost close to 16,000 COVID-19 cases due to an error in the Microsoft Excel sheet. According to BBC, nearly 16,000 Britons have not logged into the United Kingdom (UK) government’s national computer system due to a Microsoft Excel glitch. BBC quotes Public Health England – the Health Ministry’s executive agency and states that the official figures of the United Kingdom citizens getting infected during the period September 25 to October 2, 2020, were totally botched due to the Microsoft Excel sheet glitch.

According to the BBC, the Public Health England IT guys messed with official daily COVID-19 figures during the said period.

“After rapid investigation, we identified 15,841 cases between September 25 and October 2 were not included in the reported daily COVID-19 cases – majority occurred in most recent days. Every one of these cases received their Covid-19 test result as normal and all those who tested positive were advised to self-isolate,” Public Health England’s interim chief executive Michael Brodie said.

The UK failed to add nearly 16,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus to its national track and trace system due to an Excel error. A number of reports, including from The Guardian, Sky News, and The Daily Mail, say the mistake was caused when an Excel spreadsheet used to track confirmed cases of the virus reached its maximum file size and failed to update.

The revelation caps a weekend of soaring coronavirus cases for the UK, which many have speculated could lead to a second national lockdown for the country: 12,782 new cases were announced on Saturday followed by 22,961 on Sunday.


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