Les autorités indiennes ont tenté de supprimer le nombre réel de morts de COVID-19, et le chiffre réel pourrait être 5 à 7 fois plus élevé, selon The Economist. </p><div> <ul class="summary-list"><li>Les experts pensent que le nombre de morts du COVID-19 en Inde est bien plus élevé que les chiffres officiels ne le suggèrent.</li>
India’s true COVID-19 death toll could be 5 to 7 times higher than official figures suggest, according to The Economist.
Earlier this year, the country was ravaged by a disastrous second wave of COVID-19, with numerous reports of hospital overflows and oxygen shortages.
India’s health ministry says that since the start of the pandemic, just over 411,000 people have lost their lives to the virus. Experts now believe the official figure is only a fraction of the true death toll.
A recent article by Christopher Leffler of Virginia Commonwealth University in America, cited by The Economist, estimates that between 1.8 million and 2.4 million people have died from COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.
If this is true, it would mean India has by far the highest COVID-19 death rate in the world. Currently, the United States has the highest official death toll, with more than 60,000 recorded deaths, according to John Hopkins University.
Another study cited by The Economist, based on insurance claims in the Indian state of Telangana, suggests the death toll from the virus could be six times higher than official figures suggest.
The Indian government has rejected these reports, saying they are not based on scientific evidence.
Yashwant Deshmukh, chairman of the CVoter voting group, told The Economist that the misleading official figures were “not about capacity, but intention.”
“And it’s not about the central government or any particular party. This is the deletion of data at all levels, regardless of who is responsible. “
According to Foreign Policy, the way the Indian government records deaths from COVID-19 has obscured the true death toll.
The first problem, according to the magazine, is that India’s death registration system already underestimated deaths before the pandemic. Part of the reason is that many Indians do not receive medical treatment before they die, and many deaths are not medically certified.
But some death registration issues are specific to the pandemic. Official guidelines from India state that if a person dies without being tested for the virus or if they have tested negative but exhibited symptoms, their death should be classified as ‘suspected or probable COVID-19’.
But officials from several Indian states told Foreign Policy that only people who tested positive for the virus and then died soon after in hospital, with marked progression of the disease, were counted as official deaths from COVID-19.
The magazine added that most states in India have established “death audit committees,” which review death certificates to determine what should be classified as a COVID-19 death. In some cases, deaths of people with co-morbidities have been attributed to these conditions rather than COVID-19.
India has now largely overcome its second wave, reporting about 40,000 new cases per day, according to John Hopkins University. At its peak, India accounted for about half of the world’s COVID-19 cases, according to the World Health Organization.