The coronavirus pandemic has seen excess mortality rates soar in many countries.
“Excess mortality” is a term used in epidemiology and public health referring to the number of deaths above the expected level under normal conditions.
The coronavirus pandemic has led to England seeing the highest levels of excess mortality in Europe across the first half of this year, the Office for National Statistics says
England has recorded 41,082 confirmed deaths from Covid-19 since March 20.
England had the highest levels of excess mortality in Europe across the first half of 2020, according to analysis by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Britain as a whole recorded 65,000 more deaths than usual between March and June.
While Spain saw the highest peak in excess mortality in Europe at 155% in early April, England’s overall excess mortality has exceeded it, it was announced today.
In the week between March 30 and April 6, countries in Europe recorded more than 33,742 excess deaths.
Europe experienced a 50% rise in excess mortality at the height of the pandemic.
Edwin Morgan from the ONS said: “Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the first half of 2020 saw extraordinary increases in mortality rates across countries in Western Europe above the 2015 to 2019 average.
The ONS report states: “While England did not have the highest peak mortality, it did have the longest continuous period of excess mortality of any country compared, resulting in England having the highest levels of excess mortality in Europe for the period as a whole.”
While outbreaks of the virus in other countries was mostly concentrated in certain areas, the ONS found cases and deaths were spread all over the UK.
“While none of the four UK nations had a peak mortality level as high as Spain or the worst-hit local areas of Spain and Italy, excess mortality was geographically widespread throughout the UK during the pandemic, whereas it was more geographically localised in most countries of Western Europe.
“The highest peak excess mortality at national level was in Spain, with some local areas in Northern Italy and Central Spain having excess mortality levels as high as 847.7% of the average.
“Combined with the relatively slow downward ‘tail’ of the pandemic in the UK, this meant that by the end of May, England had seen the highest overall relative excess mortality out of all the European countries compared.”
In the week to June 19, excess deaths in England and Wales fell below the five-year average for the first time since mid-March.
The UK saw a high peak of 109% in mid to late April and the excess mortality rate has slowly been declining ever since.