True Pandemic Death toll 3 Times Greater Than the Official Death Rate

  • A new study suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic may have caused 18.2 million deaths.
  • This figure shows how many people were also killed by COVID-19-related indirect medical issues.
  • Due to COVID-19, the US was the country with the second highest number of excess deaths.

According to a new study published by The Lancet, the number of COVID-19-related deaths in 2020-2021 could have been three times greater than the official death count. 

Official estimatesWhile it is believed that approximately 6 million people died from COVID-19-related causes, a group comprising 96 researchers estimates that 18.2 million people may have been affected worldwide.

Peer-reviewed studies analyzed mortality reports from 74 nations and 266 states or provinces between January 1, 2020 and December 31, 2021. It used the data for predicting the number of deaths in excess around the globe.

The term “excess deaths” refers to all deaths that occurred during the pandemic and not just those who died from the coronavirus. Secondary issues such as hospital overcrowding or the inability to provide care for the seriously ill are also included.

As such, excess deaths show how many more people died during the crisis compared to if the pandemic never happened — an indicator of the true collateral damage of COVID-19.

“Understanding the true death toll from the pandemic is vital for effective public health decision-making,” Professor Haidong Wang is the principal authorStatement from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, University of Washington.

The US had the second-highest excess deaths. However, the Bolivian excess mortality rate was the highest.

According to researchers, the global excess mortality rate caused by COVID-19 was 120.3 deaths every 100,000 people. However, the excess mortality rate for COVID-19 was 300 per 100,000 in 21 countries.

According to the study, US coronavirus caused the deaths of 1.13 million more people. It was the second-highest number of cases worldwide, ranking it second behind the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s estimate. 961,000 COVID-19 deaths.

According to the study, India suffered the most excess deaths — a staggering 4.7 million people. According to the COVID-19 official death toll, the country has 515 459. World Health Organization.

Group of muslims performs the last rite of Covid-19 dead body at Shastri Park cemetery, on January 16, 2022 in New Delhi, India.

The COVID-19 pandemic may have caused an additional 4.7 million deaths in India.

Salman Ali/Hindustan Times via Getty Images


Over 500,000 deaths were recorded in Russia, Mexico and Brazil. The study found that these countries, along with India, contributed more than half of global excess deaths caused by COVID-19 from 2021 to 2021.

Researchers found that Bolivia had the highest excess mortality rate, with 734.9 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. Comparatively, the US saw an estimated 179.3 additional deaths per 100,000 population.

“The full impact of the pandemic has been much greater than what is indicated by reported deaths due to COVID-19 alone,”The researchers wrote. “Strengthening death registration systems around the world, long understood to be crucial to global public health strategy, is necessary for improved monitoring of this pandemic and future pandemics.”

The researchers stressed that additional research is necessary to identify the causes of these deaths.

Notably, five locations showed a negative excess death rate, or an indication that fewer deaths occurred in these places during the pandemic compared to prior statistical averages — Iceland, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand, and Taiwan.

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