Mexico’s Ministry of Health admits COVID-19 deaths in the country are 61% more than what is reported

Deaths associated with COVID-19 reached 316,344 on March 6, a figure 61.18% higher than the 196,272 confirmed by the Ministry of Health (SSa) within that period, a government report published on Tuesday admitted.


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The updated report on “Excess Mortality in Mexico” showed that until the ninth epidemiological week of 2021, which ended on March 6, the country registered 120,072 more deaths associated with the coronavirus than those recorded by the SSa until then.

In addition, the SSa added another 16,194 deaths from COVID-19 from March 6 until this Monday, April 19, which would total at least 332,538 people died from coronavirus.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Mexico has opted for a strategy that consists of carrying out few tests, as shown by its positivity rate close to 50%, and focusing on expanding hospital capacity instead of stopping infections.

Specialists have warned that the daily counts of the Ministry of Health tend to exclude people who die at home due to lack of access to health services.

The report detailed that its methodology consisted of using as a variable the cause of death registered in the death certificates based on the National Population Registry (Renapo).

“It allows us through search algorithms for terms related to COVID-19 to identify those acts in which words such as COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, coronavirus, among others, are mentioned,” he said.

The methodology is similar to that used by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi), which found that Mexico had 108,658 deaths from coronavirus in the first eight months of 2020, a figure 55.56% higher than the 69,849 reported by the health authorities.

The publication also documented an excess of all-cause mortality of 444,722 deaths in the 2020-2021 period.

This means that there were 1,336,599 deaths nationally, for all causes, even though the expected deaths were 891,877 based on the historical trend from 2015 to 2019.

This is a percentage of accumulated excess of deaths of 49.9%, of which 71.1% would be associated with COVID-19, the report indicated.

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