Britain now has the highest daily Covid death rate in the world

Britain now has the highest daily Covid death rate in the world: UK tops table of hardest-hit countries with 16.5 fatalities per million people and nine of the ten worst-affected nations are in Europe

  • UK averaging 935 daily fatalities in the week up to January 17, or 16.5 per million
  • Statistics compiled by Oxford University-based research team Our World in Data
  • Czech Republic, Portugal (14.82), Slovakia (14.55) and Lithuania (13.01) in top five

The UK now has the highest coronavirus death rate in the world, shocking data has revealed.

Britain was averaging 935 daily fatalities in the week up to January 17, or the equivalent of 16.5 people in every million.

Statistics compiled by the Oxford University-based research platform Our World in Data shows no other country currently has a higher death rate per capita.  

Britain overtook the Czech Republic, which had been at the top since January 11 with a death rate of 16.3, after publishing its latest death figures on Sunday night, when there were 671 victims.

Fatality statistics on the weekend and on Mondays in the UK tend to be lower due to a reporting lag, which means the country’s death rate could surge even further into the lead this week.

However there are signs that Britain’s crisis is starting to slow thanks to its third national lockdown. Infections are down by a fifth in seven days and deaths are expected to follow in the coming weeks.

Rounding out the top five countries with the worst death rates are Portugal (14.82 per million), Slovakia (14.55) and Lithuania (13.01). Panama is the only country in the top 10 list which is not in Europe. 

Mainland Europe has become the epicentre of the pandemic since last October, accounting for around a third of global deaths.

The 52 countries and territories in the region have recorded an average of 5,570 deaths every day – 17 percent higher than a week earlier.

The US and Canada have counted 407,090 altogether and saw fatalities rise by 20 per cent last week at 869 average daily deaths.

Coronavirus was the leading cause of death in England last year and accounted for one in eight fatalities, official data has revealed. 

An Office for National Statistics report published today found Covid-19 was responsible for 69,101 out of 569,770 total deaths in 2020 (12.1 per cent).  

The figure is slightly lower than the 78,076 on the Government’s dashboard because the ONS looks at cases where Covid was mentioned on the death certificate. The official tally counts people who died within 28 days of testing positive for the virus. Number 10’s figure will also be higher because it includes deaths from this January.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s were the second biggest killers in England in 2020, claiming 66,060 lives, while heart disease was behind 51,979 deaths. There were just 18,656 flu and pneumonia deaths last year, 40 per cent lower than average, which is thought to be the knock-on effect of social distancing measures.

The ONS report also found that in December, deaths from all causes were 25 per cent higher than the five-year average. Covid-19 was by far the biggest killer last month, claiming 10,973 lives. Covid killed more people than dementia, Alzheimer’s and heart disease combined (9,646). 

Meanwhile, an interactive map developed by the ONS shows how those in the poorest parts of the country have been two-and-a-half times more likely to fall victim to Covid-19 than those in the wealthiest areas. 

Scientists say people in deprived neighbourhoods are at an increased risk because they often have poorer general health, are more likely to live in overcrowded and multi-generational households and rely on public transport.

Latin America and the Caribbean have recorded 542,410 deaths and saw deaths rise by 25 per cent last week, with a daily average of 2,751 fatalities.

Britain’s death toll now stands at 89,243, according to the Department of Health, which is the fifth highest cumulative tally after the US, Brazil, India and Mexico.

But those nations have far higher population sizes, giving them much smaller rates per capita. 

For example, the US ranks 13th, at 4.72 deaths per million, and Mexico 20th, at 7.75 per million. 

India and Brazil do not make the top 30, with rates of 0.15 per million and 4.72, respectively.

Max Roser, founder of Our World in Data, blamed the UK’s grisly death toll on the Government being too slow at the start of the pandemic. ‘The last Covid death in New Zealand was in mid-September,’ he tweeted.

Figures from the Johns Hopkins University show two million people have now died worldwide with coronavirus.

The prestigious US university, based in Baltimore, Maryland, published figures today showing at least 2,034,705 have died with coronavirus and more than 95 million people globally have been infected by Covid-19.

The two million milestone was reached just over a year after the virus was first detected in the Chinese city of Wuhan and as governments roll out vaccines developed at breakneck speed in an all-out effort to vanquish the threat.

The number of dead is about equal to the population of Brussels, Mecca, Minsk or Vienna, and took eight months to hit the one million mark.

Last week was the deadliest since the pandemic broke out, with an average of over 13,600 deaths daily worldwide – a 20 per cent rise over the previous week. 

John Hopkins University said the US (389,581), Brazil (207,095), India (151,918), Mexico (137,916), Britain (87,295) and Italy (81,325) have suffered the highest death tolls, making up more than half of the global total.

Belgium has the most deaths in terms of the population with 1,751 fatalities for a million inhabitants followed by Slovenia (1,501) and Bosnia-Herzegovina (1,344).

While the count is based on figures supplied by government agencies around the world, the real toll is believed to be significantly higher, in part because of inadequate testing and the many fatalities that were inaccurately attributed to other causes, especially early in the outbreak.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said: ‘Behind this terrible number are names and faces – the smile that will now only be a memory, the seat forever empty at the dinner table, the room that echoes with the silence of a loved one.’

He said the toll ‘has been made worse by the absence of a global coordinated effort’, adding: ‘Science has succeeded, but solidarity has failed.’

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