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More Than 6 Million People Have Now Died With Covid Around half of those deaths occurred in just six countries: the USA, Brazil, India, Russia, Mexico and Peru.

More Than 6 Million People Have Now Died With Covid

LONDON ( Web News )

The global death toll from Covid-19 passed 6 million Monday, a bleak milestone as a growing number of countries around the world drop all pandemic restrictions and prepare to live with the virus. A total of 6,000,097 people have died with Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, according to data collated by Johns Hopkins University.

Around half of those deaths occurred in just six countries: the United States, Brazil, India, Russia, Mexico and Peru.

The U.S. has by far the most confirmed deaths of any nation, nearly 960,000, with Mississippi, Arizona, Alabama and New Jersey reporting the most when considering population size.

The milestone comes around four months after global deaths passed the 5 million mark in early November and roughly a million people with the coronavirus have died every three to four months since passing 1 million deaths in late September 2020.

The figure is likely a significant underestimate of the real toll of Covid-19. Studies and estimates based on actual mortality rates suggest the actual death toll could be several times higher than the official count (the Economist estimates the actual death toll is between 14 million and 24 million, some two to four times official figures). The disparity could come from a number of sources, including poor testing and surveillance for the virus, inadequate or dishonest reporting of deaths (China and India have been accused of being in this latter category) and people who die from Covid-related issues not captured by the reporting mechanisms in place (studies indicate an ongoing risk of serious health problems and death in the year after recovering). Death counts also fail to capture the ongoing, potentially debilitating, health issues many sufferers face, the knock on consequences to people unable to access healthcare for other issues as hospitals struggle to cope with Covid patients and the millions who have lost someone they care about to the virus, including more than 5 million orphaned due to Covid.

“Living with Covid.” Countries like the U.K., Denmark, Sweden, Iceland and Switzerland—as well as a number of U.S. states—have dropped all or most pandemic restrictions under new plans to “live with the virus.” Vaccines, new treatments and high levels of immunity from previous infections have helped to widen the gap between the number of people catching Covid-19 and the number getting seriously ill, hospitalized and dying from the disease. Experts warn that even stable diseases can exact a devastating toll, however, and Covid is far from stable. Several of the countries dropping restrictions have some of the worst case rates per capita in the world, including Iceland and Denmark, and more infections mean more chances for the virus to mutate into a potentially dangerous new variant. Other regions, notably China, are doggedly pursuing a “dynamic zero Covid” policy, smothering outbreaks and aiming for no cases at all. Hong Kong is also committed to this goal, though unable to react with Beijing’s severity (the Chinese government has locked down cities of millions to control outbreaks) and having largely evaded the virus earlier in the pandemic, is battling to contain its worst outbreak.