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India 3rd Nation Where Covid Killed Over 4L People. But Deaths Per Million Population Still Lowest

Family member mourn the death of a COVID-19 victim at Patna Medical College and Hospital in Patna, Friday, May 14, 2021. (PTI)

Family member mourn the death of a COVID-19 victim at Patna Medical College and Hospital in Patna, Friday, May 14, 2021. (PTI)

Among these countries, India’s deaths per million population is by far the lowest at 287.

India on Thursday became only the third country to report over 4 lakh deaths after the US and Brazil.

According to a report by Indian Express, there are ten countries where more than one lakh people have succumbed to Covid or related complications. With 6 lakh deaths, the US is at the top of this list and is followed by Brazil (5.2 lakh), India (4.0 lakh).

Among these countries, India’s deaths per million population is by far the lowest at 287. It’s 916 in Russia and between 1,000 and 2,000 for France, Mexico, the US, and UK.

Among these countries, the ratio is highest for Peru, which has seen 5,765 deaths for every million of its population.

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Meanwhile, amid the debate over underreporting of covid-19 fatalities, economists at SBI on Wednesday said that shortfall in reporting deaths is not a new phenomenon in India. One of the prime reasons for the underreporting is because many of the demises happen without any medical attention and hence, ramping up the health infrastructure is the key to manage the jigsaw, they said.

The SBI report comes amidst a debate over underreporting of covid deaths in the country especially after happenings like bodies floating in the Ganga river or just thrown from bridges, with some estimates suggesting the actual fatalities can be as high as 10 times the reported number. Over 81 per cent of the births were ‘institutional’ in 2019 as against 56 per cent in 2009, while 34.5 per cent of the deaths did not receive any medical attention which leads to the probability of getting them registered being very less. “It also goes on to show that it is quite possible that no diagnosis was undertaken and disease and death underreporting is not a new phenomena in India.

This is important in the context of recent debate on measuring the Covid deaths in India through the civil registration system," it said.

“Only better medical attention can lead to even better disease profiling and saving of lives in India. Ramping up public health infrastructure and increasing number of public health care professionals is the key to such jigsaw," they recommended. “It seems obvious" that the impact of the covid-19 devastation must be worse in lower-income countries like India, the note said.

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first published:July 02, 2021, 09:18 IST