COVID-19: Death rates in ‘rich’ and ‘poor’ countries!
May 15th, 2020 at 9:38 pm
COVID-19: Death rates in ‘rich’ and ‘poor’ countries!

Naser Shawkat Haider

We already know that some countries are having more COVID-19 positive cases in comparison with other countries, but the reason is still unknown. Let me draw your attention to some statistical figures. Look at the first two images, these are the statistics taken from the stats recorder at 7:20 pm Bangladesh Standard Time on 10 May 2020, but filtered by the highest rate or death per million population.

You don’t have to be an economist, you can see that almost all the countries on the highest death rate are “rich” countries!

Here is a comparison with five countries from “rich” and five from “poor” part of the world. Look at the table, you don’t have to be a statistician, you can clearly see that there is a correlation between higher per-capita GDP-plus higher per-capita health expenditure and higher death rate among positive patients! While, logically it was supposed to be opposite!

There is allegation that “poor” countries are not doing much test and hence the number of positive cases are being reported very low. Even if that is true, in the current context deaths cannot be hidden. Death from any cause is nowadays drawing a lots of attention and being reported or discussed widely on media and/or social media.

Even if we count deaths from Pneumonia, breathing problem, high fever and other causes in last two months which are not counted as death in these five countries at the bottom of this table, the number may be doubled or even tripled. But, you can clearly see that death per million in the five countries on the top of this table is two to three hundred times higher than these countries!

I am not a medical expert, all I wonder is that I do not understand why countries who spend 2,400 to 5,300 USD per head for health care cannot save lives of 10 to 15 percent of the patients while on the other hand countries who spend 37 to 44 USD per head are counting 1.56 to 3.30 percent of deaths among the patients of COVID-19!! This is about the confirmed positive patients in the respective government run medical facilities.

Pakistan spends only 40 USD per capita for health care and in their hospitals only 2.17 per cent COVID-19 patients have died while in France who are spending 5,370 USD per capita for health care, 14.89 per cent of COVID-19 patients have died.

The “rich” countries may not stop spread of the virus, but why they cannot save lives with all those high-tech medical facilities!

Naser Shawkat Haider is a disaster management professional