13.2 C
Byron Shire
June 20, 2024

Death toll from COVID-19 ‘much higher’ says WHO

Latest News

Murwillumbah Hospital celebrates 120 years

A community campaign for a hospital in Murwillumbah led, in 1899, to two committees and a Board of Trustees being formed, and the selection of a 15-acre site. The hospital itself opened in May 1904.

Other News

Iron Gates L&EC appeal hearing comes to an end:  decision reserved – Part I

The long-standing, controversial Iron Gates case came to an end in the Land & Environment Court (L&EC) last Friday after a two-week Hearing commencing at Evans Head on 3 June and finishing in the Court in Sydney on 14 June. 

Critical incident investigation declared following motorcycle crash – Lismore

A critical investigation has been declared after a teenager was injured in a single-vehicle crash in Lismore.

Young runner qualifies for regional championships

Year four student at Goonengerry Public School Thea Ramsay has qualified for the North Coast Regional Cross Country Championships...

The incredible shrinking ambition of Peter Dutton

Last week, Peter Dutton's Liberal-National Coalition formally abandoned Australia's legislated 2030 emissions reduction target.

No ‘key worker’ or ‘affordable housing’ for Ballina Council’s Wollongbar development

On the second last piece of Ballina Shire Council-owned residential land they have decided to develop the land with no affordable or public housing components. 

Driven with soul

Under a different stage name Milo Green is an award-winning songwriter and musician who has supported iconic artists like Diesel, Dragon, Josh Pyke, Glen Shorrock (Little River Band) and more.

Rising vaccinations, opening borders, increasing cases and decreasing hospitalisations and deaths – what are the COVID numbers that really matter now? Image www.vecteezy.com

Brought to you by Cosmos Magazine and The Echo

Estimate methodology implemented to offset under reporting globally.

The World Health Organization says the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic led to almost 15 million excess deaths, almost three times the number of deaths reported as being from COVID-19.

“Excess deaths” refer to mortality caused over and above expectations of deaths in a population within a certain period.

The study authors stated their estimates were more accurate indicators of COVID-19 related deaths.

“The alternative to excess mortality estimates—that is, relying on reported COVID-19 deaths represents a severe undercount of the toll,” they say.

“Even in countries with all-cause mortality data for which the estimates are much more certain, mortality has risen substantially such that excess mortality is much higher than reported COVID-19 deaths, whether it is by 50% or by several hundred per cent.”

In Australia, excess mortality was around 13% higher for the first eight months of the year, according to the latest estimates from the Actuaries Institute.

The Institute uses its own model to independently assess this rate using Australian Bureau of Statistics data.

8,200 deaths were attributed to COVID-19 during the first eight months of the year – coinciding with the first two Omicron waves – with a further 2,100 deaths where the disease was listed as a contributory cause.

5,100 deaths did not mention COVID-19 as a cause of death.

Actuaries’ COVID-19 Mortality Working Group spokesperson Karen Cutter explained last week that removing deaths attributed to the disease still left a large number of excess deaths from other causes.

It’s something the group believes should be investigated.

“Even after removing all ‘from’ and ‘with’ COVID-19 deaths, significant excess mortality remains for 2022,” Cutter says.

“[There was] a spike around the time of the January peak in COVID-19 deaths and another coinciding with the peak of the flu season in June/July.”

“Generally, about half of [excess deaths] were due to deaths from COVID-19, with the exception of Tasmania that had relatively fewer deaths from COVID-19 and more deaths from other causes.

“It is not clear what might be driving this, although we expect that at least part of the excess will be in respect of people who otherwise may have succumbed to respiratory disease in 2020 and 2021.”

Research into long COVID and the long-term effects of COVID-19 is ongoing, with reports indicating the disease may have longer-term impacts on other bodily systems, including the cardiovascular system.

After COVID-19, ischaemic heart disease was the biggest cause of excess mortality in Australia.


This article was originally published on Cosmos Magazine and was written by Matthew Agius. Matthew Agius is a science writer for Cosmos Magazine.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. According to the Australian Senate estimates committee, the rise of excess deaths is inline with vaccine rollout, not virus spread. This is in line with the finding of other parliamentary inquiries around the world, most notably in Europe.

    • “It is not clear what might be driving this….” says Karen, the Actuaries’ COVID-19 Mortality Working Group spokesperson.

      Doctors are also perplexed – they even coined a term for this new baffling phenomenon, calling it Sudden Adult Death Syndrome.

      I wonder what could it be……..?

      Until these “experts” include the elephant in the room as a potential cause, they will continue to lose credibility.

      Sadly, I doubt they will ever have enough integrity to do that, given they cashed in and sold it as being safe for everyone.

  2. “Significant excess mortality remains for 2022″… Yep there sure is an excess. Lots of “Died Suddenly” and “Unkown Causes…” Booster anyone..?

  3. COVID numbers would have got botched from the time professionals were told to ‘take a walk’. And that includes people who
    refused to wear a mask because they didn’t like the look.

    • The multiple studies over decades documenting the various harms of wearing masks, do make masks look bad. Ever wonder why people working on food processing lines wear hair nets and gloves, but not masks. There have been workplace health and safety laws against making people wear masks. Only masks with an air supply are ok for a few hours, but even they cause problems over time (face rot).

    • I think you mean 7% in August 2021. And 18% is far lower than other countries are currently experiencing, particularly in Europe. Yet Africa, the least vaccinated continent, isn’t experiencing this apparently.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Iron Gates L&EC appeal hearing comes to an end:  decision reserved – Part I

The long-standing, controversial Iron Gates case came to an end in the Land & Environment Court (L&EC) last Friday after a two-week Hearing commencing at Evans Head on 3 June and finishing in the Court in Sydney on 14 June. 

Supporting women’s mental health in Ballina

Women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression or anxiety, and one in five women compared to one in eight men suffer from mental ill health or disorder.

Lismore’s Freedom of Entry Parade

Lismore is set to host a Freedom of Entry Parade by the 41st Battalion, a time-honoured tradition dating back to medieval times

Inequity underpins solar-battery rebates

Over 3.2 million Australian households now have solar systems, and NSW leads, with a million systems (rooftop, heated pool or hot water).