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COVID-19 fatalities among residents accounted for about half of ‘excess deaths’ in 2021: Ong Ye Kung
- 1,535 Excess Deaths in Singapore in 2021, 804 of Which Due to Covid-19
by Linette Lai, Health Correspondent, https://tnp.straitstimes.com/ , 9 May 2022
Singapore saw about 1,535 excess deaths last year, after accounting for the country’s ageing population, said Health Minister Ong Ye Kung on Monday (May 9). The 804 deaths due to Covid-19 accounted for 52 per cent of this figure, said Mr Ong, who was responding to Workers’ Party MP Leon Perera (Aljunied GRC) on the number of excess deaths due to Covid-19, and how the authorities derived this figure.
In his response, Mr Ong explained the Health Ministry (MOH) compares death rates across the years to calculate the excess death rate. There are excess deaths if the death rate in a pandemic goes above that expected in the absence of a pandemic, and over what is expected from population ageing.
Singapore’s age-standardised death rate decreased from 563 to 519 per 100,000 residents between 2017 and 2020. But last year, this rate went up to 557 per 100,000 residents. In a pandemic, excess deaths will be higher than officially reported deaths directly caused by the disease, Mr Ong said.