You asked

Please provide the number of deaths from flu and pneumonia since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We said

Thank you for your enquiry.

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide the individual figures for influenza and pneumonia deaths for 2020 at this time, as we are due to publish these in the future. All underlying causes are published as part of our Deaths Registered Series.  2019 data will be available in July 2020 and 2020 registrations will be published in July 2021. Consequently, the information you have requested is regarded as exempt according to Section 22 (1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, whereby information is exempt from release if there is a view to publish the information in the future.

This exemption is subject to a public interest test. Whilst we recognise the desirability of information being freely available, we also acknowledge that public authorities must have the freedom to be able to determine their own publication timetables. This allows them to deal with the necessary preparation, administration, and context of publication. Furthermore, public interest is best served through the public having confidence that the information published by ONS is accurate and final. Release on an ad-hoc basis would not achieve this aim and will cause unnecessary confusion if they were to be misrepresented. In this case, exempting the information clearly outweighs the public interest in disclosure.

Whilst, we are unable to provide all of the data requested as part of the Freedom of Information regime, we can provide our publication deaths registered weekly in England and Wales, which includes figures for deaths by all respiratory diseases and COVID-19.  Flu and Pneumonia are included within respiratory diseases and data is available from w/e 3rd January in the 2020 data set. The previous versions tab will provide data for 2019.

The Deaths involving COVID-19, England and Wales: deaths occurring in April 2020 will provide information on COVID related deaths with pre-existing conditions including flu and pneumonia. The next update to this publication is due mid June. The final release date can be found on our Release Calendar.