It is estimated that more than 18.2 million people may have died as a result Coronavirus Until the end of December last year.
This is despite the fact that the official death toll of Covid indicates that 5.9 million people died between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2021.
Excess death – The difference between the number of all deaths and the expected number based on past trends – is a key measure of the true death toll in a pandemic.
Although experts made several attempts to estimate excess mortality from covidium, many were limited in their access to the data.
The new study provides the first review estimates of over-mortality – direct and indirect – due to pandemics globally and for 191 countries and territories between January 2020 and December 2021.
For the UK this indicates Is dead There could have been more or less than the official records suggest, with 173,000 reported cases and research estimates ranging from 163,000 to 174,000.
Lead author Dr. Heidong Wang of the American Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation said: “Understanding the actual number of pandemic deaths is vital to making effective public health decisions.
“Studies in several countries, including Sweden and the Netherlands, have shown that Covid-19 was a direct cause of excess mortality, but we do not currently have sufficient evidence in most locations.
“Further research will help identify how many deaths were caused directly by Covid-19 and how many were caused by indirect pandemics.”
Researchers collected weekly or monthly data on all causes of death by 2021, 2020 and 11 in the previous years by searching government websites in 74 countries and 266 states and provinces, the World Mortality Database, the Human Mortality Database and the European Statistics Office.
The data were used in the models to estimate excess deaths due to pandemics, including in areas where there is no weekly or monthly death report.
Excess mortality is estimated at 120 deaths per 100,000 population globally, and over 21 deaths were estimated at more than 300 deaths per 100,000 population.
Excess mortality rates varied significantly by country and region, according to the study.
The highest estimates of excess mortality were:
- Latin American Andes – 512 deaths per 100,000
- Eastern Europe – 345 deaths per 100,000
- Central Europe – 316 deaths per 100,000
- South Sub-Saharan Africa – 309 deaths per 100,000
- Central Latin America – 274 deaths per 100,000
Several locations outside these regions had similarly high rates, including Lebanon, Armenia, Tunisia, Libya, several regions in Italy, and several states in the southern United States.
However, on the contrary, some countries have had fewer deaths than expected, based on trends from previous years.
Among them were Iceland with 48 deaths per 100,000, Australia with 38 fewer deaths per 100,000 and Singapore with 16 fewer deaths per 100,000.
South Asia had the highest estimated over-deaths with Covid with 5.3 million over-deaths, followed by North Africa and the Middle East (1.7 million) and Eastern Europe (1.4 million).
At the country level, the estimated excess mortality rate was recorded in India (4.1 million) and the US and Russia, both at 1.1 million.
Together with Mexico (798,000), Brazil (792,000), Indonesia (736,000) and Pakistan (664,000), these countries could account for more than half of the global pandemic-induced excess deaths in 24 months, the study said. .
Researchers suggest that large differences between excess mortality and official records may be due to inadequate diagnosis, lack of testing, and problems with reporting death data.
They say it is crucial between the deaths caused directly by Covid and the deaths caused by the indirect effects of the pandemic.
Evidence from initial studies suggests that a significant proportion of excess mortality is a direct result of the coronavirus.
However, death can also occur due to indirect causes such as suicide or drug use due to behavioral changes or access to health and other essential services.
To date, only 36 countries have published data on the cause of death in 2020.
As more country data becomes available, it will be possible to get a better idea of how many people died directly from Covid and how many occurred as a result of the indirect.
The authors acknowledge numerous limitations in their research, including that the statistical model was used to predict excess mortality for countries that did not record weekly or monthly data.
The conclusions are published in K. The Lancet.
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