NBC NEWS – The number of people worldwide who died because of the pandemic in its first two years may total more than 18 million, according to a sobering study released Thursday.
That’s three times more than the reported global death toll from Covid-19, which crossed 6 million earlier this week. [18 million deaths out of a global population of 7.95 million is a survival rate of 99.77%. – HH]
The research, published in the peer-reviewed journal The Lancet, analyzed data from 74 countries and 266 states and territories between Jan. 1, 2020, and Dec. 31, 2021.
The scientists calculated excess deaths, a measure of how many more people died than would be expected had the pandemic not occurred. That means the estimate accounts both for people killed by Covid directly — confirmed and undiagnosed cases — as well as those whose deaths may be indirectly attributed to the pandemic.
Examples in the latter category include people with serious medical conditions who were unable to seek timely care because hospitals were overburdened, people who died by suicide, and those who died due to a lack of access to essential services.
“The difference between excess mortality and reported COVID-19 deaths might be a function of underdiagnosis due to insufficient testing, reporting challenges, or higher than expected mortality from other diseases,” the study said.
Haidong Wang, an associate professor at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation and the study’s lead author, said the findings offer a clearer picture of the pandemic’s wrath.
“We know that because of the severity of the pandemic, its impact on mortality is beyond the number of people who died from Covid-19 directly,” he said. “Excess mortality is more accurate in describing the true impact” … READ MORE.