India’s Covid-19 fatality rate has a different story to tell

India’s Covid-19 fatality rate has a different story to tell

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India’s total Covid-19 deaths crossed 50,000 on Sunday, the fourth highest tally in the world. However, the country’s fatality rate is less than 2%, which is on the lower side compared to the rest of the world. Some recent reports have said India is undercounting deaths and that actual deaths are higher. A look at cross-country fatality rates and India’s count:

1. INDIA HAS A LOW FATALITY RATE

11Agencies

KEY REASONS WHY COVID-19 FATALITIES COULD BE MISSED


– Low testing: A person may die of Covid-19 but is not counted because of s/he wasn’t tested

– Lack of robust public health surveillance system; medically certifi ed deaths just 22%

– Most deaths occur at home and some of them could be Covid positive

– Wrong diagnoses, especially if patients are suffering from other ailments

2. COULD INDIA BE MISSING MANY COVID-19 DEATHS?

Even if deaths are missed for above mentioned reasons, it is not likely to be large because

– India’s counts not out of sync with rest of South Asia, which is demographically similar

22Agencies

If rest of South Asia is reporting right, India’s numbers should not be massively underestimated

ANECDOTAL EVIDENCE


– Anecdotal evidence does not suggest very high fatalities

– Most countries with high deaths had visible evidence

3. REASONS WHY INDIA’S AND SOUTH ASIA’S FATALITY RATE MAY BE LOW


– Young population; Covid fatalities more in higher age groups

– Higher immunity as exposed to elements more than developed countries

– Virus may have weakened with time; countries that caught early had high fatality

4. SOUTH ASIA’S RECOVERY RATE IS VERY HIGH

33Agencies





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