health

April 24, 2022

LINEO MABEKEBEKE

2 min read

COVID-19 records excessive death rate

COVID-19 records excessive death rate

WHO Secretary General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Story highlights

  • Pandemic claims lives of the elderly
  • The study to ascertain the impact of the pandemic

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THE Ministries of Health, Home Affairs and Development Planning have given out a report here on Tuesday this week validating excessive death rate due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The report outlined death statistics that occurred before and during the COVID-19 pandemic, indicating whether or not the country experienced a change in the number of deaths recorded.

The report says generally, all deaths were more than expected in 2021 for age group 65 years and above. As for January to April, July and December 2020, more deaths were recorded than the rest of the months under review.

Also, the report shows that in January, February, July and August 2021, there was a peak with more deaths recorded than expected for July and August.

The number of deaths peaked in January and fell below the 2020 deaths in March and afterwards for males, staying within the expected range but above the 2020 deaths.

Government said the objective of the study was to assess the excess mortality during the pandemic and evaluate its impact in the country.

The study would ascertain the impact of the pandemic and other causes to the mortality rate, which would communicate with public health for informed decision-making on mortality trends.

Data was disaggregated by all 10 districts of Lesotho, places of occurrence, (health facility and community), months, age group and sex, to establish the baseline death patterns and assessed excess mortality during the pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented impact on health systems globally and an estimated 3.9 million deaths have been reported worldwide by the end of June 2021, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), a specialised agency of the United Nations (UN) responsible for international public health.

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However, WHO said the figures underestimated the true impact of the pandemic, estimating that excess mortality from the pandemic in 2020 to be two-thirds higher than reported COVID-19 deaths.

Earlier this year, WHO Secretary General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus declared the COVID-19 outbreak to be a global public health emergency of international concern.

Many countries including Lesotho faced a mammoth task of handling and addressing a paradigm shift against what was perceived to be a normal way of life.

Lesotho with a population of 2.1 million has recorded more than 3 000 COVID-19 cases from the start of May to August 10, 2021. During the period under review, the virus killed 391 people.

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