The current numbers of the pandemic highlight that there are many more victims attributable to Covid in rich and developed countries such as the United States, Italy, Belgium, United Kingdom and Spain rather than the poor ones. Suffice it to mention the examples of India (1.3 billion inhabitants) and Nigeria (200 million) which respectively registered a tenth and a hundredth of American deaths. How can this phenomenon be explained? Why does the US or Italy have much higher lethality rates than developing countries? He tried to give some answers Siddhartha Mukherjee, a Columbia University medicine professor of Indian descent.
He is a well-known personality in America because of some essays he has published: in a long article that appeared in the New Yorker tried to make sense of the pandemic statistics. In particular, he cited the case of the state of Mumbai, where the anti-Covid torch task reported that intensive care is almost empty: an almost unbelievable fact, if you think that in Mumbai there is a million people who live in a mass. makeshift housing, with disastrous hygienic conditions and non-existent social distancing.
So much so that when the pandemic was declared in March 2020, epidemiologists had estimated a massacre in a similar slum, with at least five thousand dead. Instead, a few hundred have occurred. What are the reasons for this difference? The New Yorker underlines the demographic structure of developing countries, which could be decisive: where the average age is much lower, Covid cases are less lethal. However, this explanation is only partial, as many victims may not have been properly counted.
For example, this is the opinion of Oliver Watson, an epidemiologist at Imperial College who helped create the forecast models that were very pessimistic about developing countries compared to what actually happened. According to Watson, many deaths occur at home and are not counted together with those of many hospitals that do not consider Covid deaths that occurred during hospitalization.
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