Pneumonia and diabetes deaths surged early in pandemic

3 minute read

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows a peak in March and April.

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29 October

  • Deaths from pneumonia and diabetes exceeded the five-year average around the time of Australia’s first peak of COVID-19 infections, according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
    The ABS has released mortality statistics for the first six months of 2020, which shows a surge in deaths over the four weeks from 18 March to 14 April, which coincides with the first pandemic peak in Australia.
    In total, there were 11,047 deaths during those four weeks, which is 914 more than the historic average for that same period from 2015 to 2019.
    For the week ending on the 31 March, there were 2824 deaths – 298 more than the historic average of 2526 and well above the previous highest number of 2636, even though there were only 11 deaths from COVID-19 recorded during that week. That peak coincides with more than 2400 new COVID-19 infections being recorded across Australia.
    The week ending on the 31 March also saw 74 pneumonia deaths recorded – 34 more than the five-year historical average – and 111 deaths attributed to diabetes, which was 35 more than the five-year historical average.
    Interestingly, from early June until the end of July the death rate in Australia has been lower than the same period over the previous five years. However the last data point in July shows an increase in death rates back up to within the typical range.
  • Both Germany and France are re-entering lockdown in a bid to deal with a second wave surge in COVID-19 infections.
    According to the ABC, Germany will close down all bars, restaurants, cinemas, theatres, pools and gyms from November 2, and citizens are asked to avoid all non-essential travel. Schools and shops will remain open. In the past 24 hours, the nation has recorded 14,964 new cases of the disease, bringing its total to 464,239, with 10,183 deaths, since the pandemic began.
    France has also experienced a rise in case numbers – 36,437 new cases and 244 deaths on Wednesday alone – which has prompted the introduction of stay-at-home orders for its citizens. People may only leave to get essential goods, medical attention, for one hour of exercise per day, or if their job cannot be done from home. Schools will remain open.
  • Here are the latest confirmed COVID-19 infection numbers from around Australia to 9pm Wednesday:
    National – 27,554, with 907 deaths
    ACT – 114 (0)
    NSW – 4406 (8)
    NT – 33 (0)
    QLD – 1169 (2)
    SA – 495 (1)
    TAS – 230 (0)
    VIC – 20,342 (2)
    WA – 765 (1)

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