THE grim impact of the coronavirus pandemic looks only too clear from figures for Europe’s death toll during the outbreak, the continent registering 140,000 more deaths than usual in March and April.
From analysing data from 21 countries, European Union statistical office Eurostat found “the number of deaths due to Covid-19 rose rapidly in some Member States at the beginning of March 2020,” adding, “in some parts of Europe, the difference compared to previous years was exceptionally high.
“On average, among the 21 countries for which data are available, there were about 140,000 more deaths during weeks 10-17 (March – April) in 2020 than the average number of deaths during the same period over the four years 2016 to 2019.”
Eurostat said “the peak of additional deaths” compared to the weekly average came in the week from March 30 to April 5.
The countries with available figures were Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Spain, France, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Austria, Portugal, Slovakia, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
The analysis revealed the increases in mortality affected men more than women from looking at the 20 with available data (Germany was the exception).
Eurostat also noted that there was a “significant increase in mortality for those aged 70 and over,” and that “additional deaths were more substantial for men, at round 40 per cent more, than for women (around 30 per cent more).”