European Union countries recorded over 450,000 excess deaths between March and November 2020, according to EU data released this week.
Researchers used monthly data to gauge excess mortality in 2020 using a baseline of average deaths recorded over the same period in 2016 to 2019.
Statistics agency Eurostat said the data “gives a general measure of the mortality impact of the Covid-19 pandemic because it includes all deaths independently of their causes.”
They determined the estimated EU average using data from all member countries except Ireland, which didn’t provide information.
Excess deaths reached a peak in November, when there was a 40 per cent increase of the average number of deaths.
The November figure followed a much smaller peak in April, during the pandemic’s first wave, which saw deaths sitting at 25 per cent above the average.
After April, numbers declined though they began to rise again in August, as did coronavirus cases.
The November peak was especially deadly in Bulgaria, Poland and Slovenia, which all showed an increase of more than 90 per cent after recording low death totals in April.
In November, Belgium saw a nearly 60 per cent increase, while both Italy and Austria neared 50 per cent increase.
Main Photo: A funeral worker wearing a protective suit stands next to a coffin with a body of a man, who died of covid-19 in Amadora, outskirts of Lisbon, Portugal. EPA-EFE/MARIO CRUZ