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Undercounting of COVID-19 pandemic deaths has been witnessed across the world.Global mortality excess estimates by the World Health Organization are significantly different from official figures, pointing to undercounting– "while 1,813,188 COVID-19 deaths were reported in 2020... WHO estimates suggest an excess mortality of at least 3,000,000." The global average for underreporting COVID-19 deaths in cities is 30%. The aim of arriving at a truer death count is ultimately linked to improving national and international abilities and responses to fighting the virus. Undercounting can cause a number of problems such as delay in vaccines to priority populations.
Lack of resources with regard to testing, differences in how COVID-19 cases and deaths are counted, and other inefficiencies in data collection and updation largely explain this undercounting.In Africa, eight of the 56 sovereign states compulsorily register deaths. In Europe, apart from two countries, all have a universal death registration system. In India 70% of the deaths are registered while medical certificates are given to a minority of these; in 2019 registration of deaths varied significantly from state to state (37% to 100%).
Counting of COVID-19 deaths is complicated by co-morbidities— classifying whether the person died "of" or "with" the coronavirus.In India in March 2020, the first two coronavirus infected persons to die, officially died due to other illnesses, co-morbidities, and not the virus. In the United Kingdom, following changes in how COVID-19 deaths are counted to only include those within 28 days of a positive test, the number of COVID-19 fatalities diverged from the number of deaths with "COVID-19" listed as a cause of death on death certificates. In April 2020, New York increased its COVID-19 death count to include persons assumed to die from lung diseases but not tested for the virus.
On 17 April 2020, China increased its official figures of deaths from COVID-19 by 50% to correct for undercounting as a result of "undetected deaths at home, late and incomplete reporting".The results of serological survey by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention released on 28 December 2020 shows that COVID-19 cases in Wuhan may have been may been undercounted to the ratio of 1 to 10.
On average, COVID-19 deaths made up under 10% of the excess deaths between May and August 2020.The estimates of undercounting in Egypt by Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) was in the ratio of 1 to 12. Between the start of the pandemic and May 2021, Egypt registered nearly 200,000 excess deaths, compared ton only 15,000 confirmed COVID deaths, one of the greatest underestimates in the world.
In April and May 2021, a number of India newspapers reported on the discrepancies between the number of cremations at various locations and the official counts for COVID-19 deaths at the same locations, leading to conclusions of undercounting.The Telegraph accessed an order in a rota circulated in a hospital in West Bengal related to COVID-19 deaths which said "In case of Covid positive - No mention of Covid in death certificate." Such cover-ups also contribute to undercounts in the national figures. Not mentioning COVID-19 as the cause of death on the death certificate has caused a number of orphans whose parents died of COVID-19 to become ineligible for orphan specific government schemes.
In April 2020, a Reuters data review found that 2200 people dying in Indonesia of severe COVID-19 symptoms were not part of the government’s tally for deaths due to the virus.In March and April 2020 Jakarta saw excess mortality counts much higher than the number of deaths being attributed to the virus. Around the same time period, the number of burials following COVID-19 precautions were over five times the number of the official government COVID-19 death count. A study that had been conducted between December 2020 and January 2021 had suggested that around 15% of Indonesia's population had already contracted COVID-19, much more than the official percentage of only 0.4% at the time, while a survey conducted in 15–31 March 2021 found that 44.5% of Jakarta's population of 10.6 million people had already contracted COVID-19, compared to the official count of 382,000 (3.6%) at the end of March.
In March 2020, Bergamo had 5,400 deaths as compared to an average of 996 deaths (average taking into past five years). The Wall Street Journal estimated an excess of 352 deaths due to COVID-19 while the confirmed COVID-19 deaths were 201.
In May 2020 excess deaths in Tokyo were 200.Nikkei Asia reasoned that "lack of testing and delayed numbers take blame for possible undercount".
In October 2020 Mexico’s National Centre for Preventive Programs and Disease Control came out with a statement that Mexico had undercounted deaths by at least 50,000.However by 29 December 2020 these extra deaths had not been included into the overall death count. On 28 March 2021 Mexico revised its official death toll with an increase of 60%.
Doctors in Pakistan told The Telegraph that in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa stigma was resulting in undercounts. However, an official said that while undercounting was likely, the numbers weren't significant enough relative to the total death count.
On 31 May 2021 Peru revised its official COVID-19 death toll from 69,342 to 180,764.This revision was made following the on-ground situation and reports which were significantly different from official figures. The revision was made by an expert panel formed in April 2021, the panel consisted of health experts from Peru and WHO. Following the revision Prime Minister Bermúdez stated that "we will have more exhaustive figures and figures that will be very useful to monitor the pandemic and take appropriate measures to confront it".
On 28 December 2020 Russia's Federal State Statistics Service released new excess death figures out of which more than 81% were attributed to COVID-19 taking Russia's death toll in 2020 to over 186,000.This was done following reports of undercounting, underreporting, and criticism surrounding Russia's criteria for counting a COVID-19 death. Indicators of death such as ambulance usage and deaths of health workers had also pointed to higher death figures.
As on February 2021, South Africa's excess deaths for the same time period was around three times the official COVID-19 death tally. That is, over 90,000 people died of unknown causes or due to delayed treatment for other health issues.
A study published in Nature Communications estimated that only 1.25% of COVID-19 mortality was reported in Damascus during the first wave, and 12.6% of COVID-19 deaths have been reported in the second wave.
In May 2021, following an analysis by the IHME that the true count of fatalities due to COVID-19 in United States was above 900,000, Anthony Fauci said that "no doubt" there was undercounting of COVID-19 deaths.A study published in The Lancet in September 2020 also pointed to significant undercounting. Undercounting has been reported from Virginia and California. A 2021 scandal involving New York authorities involves undercounting or an alleged cover-up of COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes in 2020.
From June to September 2020, a prospective systematic postmortem surveillance study was conducted in Lusaka to measure the postmortem prevalence of SARS-CoV-2. The study found less than 10% of people who had COVID-19 before death were tested.
Stanford University School of Medicine came out with a study which found that overcounting of COVID-19 hospitalizations in children may be occurring.ThePrint published figures that the Delhi government may have started over-counting; hinting at mortality displacement. Low testing may result in a high death rates, causing overestimates in mortality related modelling.
Mortality displacement is a phenomenon where a period of excess deaths is followed by a period of mortality deficit. It is also known as "harvesting". It is usually attributable to environmental phenomena such as heat waves, cold spells, epidemics and pandemics, especially influenza pandemics, famine or war.
The COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus pandemic, is an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The novel virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, in December 2019; a lockdown in Wuhan and other cities in Hubei province failed to contain the outbreak, and it spread to other parts of mainland China and around the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020, and a pandemic on 11 March 2020. Since 2021, variants of the virus have emerged and become dominant in many countries, with the Delta, Alpha and Beta variants being the most virulent. As of 28 September 2021, more than 232 million cases and 4.75 million deaths have been confirmed, making it one of the deadliest pandemics in history.
The COVID-19 pandemic in the United States is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019. 43,116,442 confirmed cases have been reported since January 2020, with 690,426 deaths, the most of any country, and the twenty-second-highest per capita worldwide. As many infections have gone undetected, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that, as of May 2021, there could be a total 120.2 million infections in the United States, or more than a third of the total population. COVID-19 was the third-leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2020, behind heart disease and cancer. U.S. life expectancy dropped by 3 years for Hispanic Americans, 2.9 years for African Americans, and 1.2 years for white Americans from 2019 to 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Russia is part of the ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have spread to Russia on 31 January 2020, when two Chinese citizens in Tyumen (Siberia) and Chita tested positive for the virus, with both cases being contained. Early prevention measures included restricting the border with China and extensive testing. The infection spread from Italy on 2 March, leading to additional measures such as cancelling events, closing schools, theatres, and museums, as well as shutting the border and declaring a non-working period which, after two extensions, lasted until 11 May 2020. By the end of March 2020, the vast majority of federal subjects, including Moscow, had imposed lockdowns. By 17 April 2020, cases had been confirmed in all federal subjects. At the beginning of September 2020, the number of COVID-19 cases in Russia reached a million. The number of COVID-19 cases in the country also reached two million on 19 November 2020, three million on 26 December 2020, four million on 10 February 2021 and five million on 23 May 2021. At the end of 2020, there were nearly 3.2 million COVID-19 cases in Russia. On 3 April 2021, the number of COVID-19 deaths in the country reached 100,000.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Nepal is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The first case in Nepal was confirmed on 23 January 2020 when a 31-year-old student, who had returned to Kathmandu from Wuhan on 9 January, tested positive for the disease. It was also the first recorded case of COVID-19 in South Asia. Nepal's first case of local transmission was confirmed on 4 April in Kailali District. The first death occurred on 14 May. A country-wide lockdown came into effect on 24 March 2020, and ended on 21 July 2020. As of 27 September 2021, the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) has confirmed a total of 792,367 cases, 762,416 recoveries, and 11,103 deaths in the country. In the meantime, 4,174,503 real-time RT-PCR (RT-qPCR) tests have been performed in 40 laboratories across the country. The viral disease has been detected in all provinces and districts of the country, with Bagmati Province and Kathmandu being the worst hit province and district respectively. As for Nepalese abroad, as of 26 July 2020, the Non-Resident Nepali Association has reported a total of 12,667 confirmed cases, 16,190 recoveries, and 161 deaths across 35 countries.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Sudan is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Sudan in March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in the Central African Republic is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed to have reached the Central African Republic in March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in The Gambia is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached The Gambia in March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Guinea-Bissau is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Guinea-Bissau in March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Mozambique is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Mozambique in March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Rwanda is part of the ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Rwanda in March 2020. Rwanda's response to the pandemic has received international praise for its effectiveness. Despite limited resources, the country's well organised healthcare system, rapid deployment of testing procedures and high public trust in medical authorities have led to a successful public health response.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Sierra Leone is part of the ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Sierra Leone on 31 March 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Chad is part of the ongoing worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached Chad in March 2020. As the third least developed nation in the world, according to the HDI in 2019, Chad has faced unique economic, social, and political challenges under the strain of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic in the Republic of the Congo is part of the worldwide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. The virus was confirmed to have reached the Republic of the Congo in March 2020.
There is no specific, effective treatment or cure for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. One year into the pandemic, highly effective vaccines have now been introduced and are beginning to slow the spread of SARS-CoV-2; however, for those awaiting vaccination, as well as for the estimated millions of immunocompromised persons who are unlikely to respond robustly to vaccination, treatment remain important. Thus, the lack of progress developing effective treatments means that the cornerstone of management of COVID-19 has been supportive care, which includes treatment to relieve symptoms, fluid therapy, oxygen support and prone positioning as needed, and medications or devices to support other affected vital organs.
This article contains statistics about the COVID-19 pandemic in India. COVID-19 cases, deaths, recoveries, and other statistics are shown in nationwide and regional maps and graphs.
This article contains the current number of confirmed Covid-19 deaths per population by country. It also has cumulative death totals by country. For these numbers over time see the tables, graphs, and maps at COVID-19 pandemic deaths and COVID-19 pandemic by country and territory.
The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed race-based health care disparities in many countries, including the United States, United Kingdom, Norway, Sweden, Canada, and Singapore. These disparities are believed to originate from structural racism in these countries which pre-dates the pandemic; a commentary in The BMJ noted that "ethnoracialised differences in health outcomes have become the new normal across the world" as a result of ethnic and racial disparities in COVID-19 healthcare, determined by social factors. Data from the United States and elsewhere shows that minorities, especially black people, have been infected and killed at a disproportionate rate to white people.
This article presents official statistics gathered during the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom.
The CDC publishes official numbers of COVID-19 cases in the United States.
[...] 30% underreporting of COVID-19 deaths in these cities—the worldwide average...
Arriving at credible estimates of the epidemic’s true toll could be key to mitigating further disaster.
[...] the first two Indians to succumb to COVID-19 – died not because of the novel coronavirus that is driving a global pandemic but because of the other illnesses they already had.
CM Vijay Rupani had denied reports that the state government was hiding the true count of Covid fatalities. "As per the guidelines of the ICMR, if a comorbid patient dies then a committee of experts decides the primary and secondary causes of death," he said. "If that committee identifies the main cause of death as heart attack, then even if the patient was infected, such a death is not counted as being caused by Covid. The same system is followed across the entire country."