An estimated 14.91 million people died worldwide in 2020 and 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic Analysis of global deaths released by the World Health Organization on Thursday.
The estimate — with a 95 percent confidence interval of 13.3 million to 16.6 million — is significantly larger than the number of reported deaths directly caused by COVID-19 during this period, which official counts put at around 5, 42 million lay. But estimates of the number of deaths attempt to capture the true toll of the pandemic – direct and indirect deaths. The estimate is made by comparing the number of deaths that have occurred during a period with those expected in that period based on historical mortality data and modelling. Such modeling also takes into account historical differences, such as B. fewer traffic and flu deaths during the pandemic due to movement and health restrictions.
Therefore, estimates of deaths aim to capture not only reported COVID-19 deaths, but also unreported COVID-19 deaths and deaths caused indirectly by COVID-19. This may include people dying from preventable, non-COVID-related illnesses because they delayed or avoided healthcare for fear of contagion, or because their healthcare system was overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients and could not provide optimal care.
“These sobering data point not only to the impact of the pandemic, but also to the need for all countries to invest in more resilient health systems that can maintain essential health services in times of crisis, including stronger health information systems,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement.
The estimates may point to the countries that have struggled to respond to the pandemic and the actual devastating number.
According to reports, for example, India delayed the release of the WHO analysis by months because of a dispute over the estimates. According to WHO estimates, 4.74 million people died in India in 2020 and 2021 as a result of the pandemic, almost a third of the global total death toll from pandemics. India previously reported only about 481,500 deaths during that period.
Overall, just 10 countries were responsible for 68 percent of the excess deaths: India, Russia, Indonesia, the US, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, Turkey, Egypt and Iran. The analysis also broke down excess deaths by gender and age, finding that males accounted for more deaths (57 percent males), as did older adults. All data can be found here.
The analysis estimated that the US death toll would reach nearly 932,500 by the end of 2021. The country reported a little more 848,000 dead directly caused by COVID-19 for this period, while the reported COVID-19 deaths now stand at 997,000. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has its own excess death estimate for the pandemic, which is now available about 1.12 million.
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