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Recording of covid death 19

By the end of 2022, the number of Serbian citizens officially killed by Kovid 19 will be around 12,700. It is an impressive loss for a small country, and corresponds to the entire division of soldiers killed in the war. The only problem is that the actual number of pandemic victims is much higher. Consider the facts.

According to the official data of the Republic Bureau of Statistics, only during 2020, 10,356 of our compatriots were buried or cremated with a diagnosis of 19 kovids. It is a new disease, so the number of its victims in the previous decade was zero. A comparison of deaths in 2020 with a 10-year average indicates that some other causes of death were significantly higher than expected. Physicist and statistician Igor Smolić summarized and tabulated the data of the Republic Bureau of Statistics, which shows that, in addition to deaths from the previously unknown kovid 19, a noticeable excess of mortality was recorded in three other groups of diseases: heart and blood vessels (3629). respiration (1036) and insufficiently defined states (928). There is no doubt that many of them were taken to the grave by a new corona virus.

On the other hand, there were 812 fewer cancer patients than the cause of death than expected. Here, too, the explanation is logical. On the one hand, some citizens in the advanced phase of the malignant process were killed by kovid 19, and on the other hand, the pandemic had a negative impact on early diagnosis and timely treatment of cancer, but the consequences of these omissions will be seen. Although screening programs and other ways to detect cancer have suffered, and although surgical, aerial, and medical interventions have often been delayed, patients who have been denied these measures have not died immediately. Some of that group’s life expectancy will be shortened, so they will die in two-three-four, instead of five-ten or more years.

There were slightly fewer or slightly more other illnesses than expected, and the total surplus of deaths in 2020 was 15,220 deaths over the 10-year average. For 2021, the Republic Bureau of Statistics provided preliminary data for the first 11 months. The average was exceeded by 31,679 deaths. It is easy to calculate that, without a pandemic, 46,799 (15,220 + 31,579) of our people would remain alive by the end of November 2021, and according to some foreign sources, that number is even higher – 48,399. If the same methodology is used (compared to the 10-year average before the pandemic, ie the period 2010-2019), the excess mortality by the end of December could easily reach 50,000. By analogy with 2020, the total number of deaths on whose death certificate the diagnosis of kovid 19 would be entered would exceed 35,000.

Let us now return to the slightly more than 12,500 deaths since the beginning of the epidemic that we hear about every day. If we accepted that number as a real reflection of the real situation and remembered the data on 10,356 deaths from kovid 19 in 2020, it would mean that in 2021, that disease took away just over 2,000 people. However, so many victims were recorded every five weeks last fall.

It is clear, and some members of the Crisis Staff admitted that, that the number of deaths from kovid 19 in Serbia is approximately three times higher than what we learn from the media. With about 7,000 deaths from kovid 19 per million inhabitants, we are at the very top of the world list in terms of the severity of the pandemic.

Why is it important to know the truth? First, citizens would be more cautious and more inclined to accept measures if they were aware of the real scale of illness and death. Second, epidemiological theory says that in order to conduct a successful anti-epidemic fight, it is important to gain people’s trust and their willingness to cooperate. Third, trust is gained by honesty and treating citizens as reasonable individuals, and not by insufficiently mature objects that need to be lulled either by embellishing reality or by frightening by sowing panic. Fourth, we are in a particularly delicate situation because we have all – the government, doctors and the media – sent contradictory messages to the people and led to their resignation. Establishing broken ties is important not only because of this disease, but also because of the more or less harmonious functioning of the social community.

The question remains whether it is possible to provide at least approximately accurate data. Of course it is. These are Burkina Faso, Eritrea, Mongolia and other countries. We did not even spare the money to introduce an integrated electronic data collection system at the very beginning, at the end of March 2020. Not only every diagnosis of covid 19, but also every change in the patient’s condition (hospitalization, arrival in the intensive care unit, death), had to be reported within two hours. In other words, there was a complete real-time overview of the situation, which is key to taking appropriate action. The system was later changed, but only with the aim of making it even more perfect.

To conclude: it is possible and necessary for the public to have access to real data on illness and death from infection with the new corona virus.

Epidemiologist, retired professor at the Faculty of Medicine

Contributions published in the section “Views” reflect attitudes author, not always editorial politics list

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