The numbers are in
The Continuous Mortality Investigation (CMI) has today published an analysis of mortality in 24 international territories. The analysis investigates mortality from the start of the coronavirus pandemic until the end of 2022.
The key points are:
- England & Wales had excess mortality of +26% to the end of 2022 – the third highest of the twelve Western European and Nordic territories analysed and ninth highest of all territories analysed.
- Of all territories analysed, Bulgaria had the highest cumulative excess mortality to the end of 2022 (+65%). Poland had the second highest (+46%) and the USA the third highest (+45%).
- Of all territories with data to the end of 2022, New Zealand had the lowest cumulative excess mortality (-4%). Australia had the second lowest (+1%) and Norway the third lowest (+3%).
Cobus Daneel, Chair of the CMI Mortality Projections Committee, said:
“England & Wales was hit hard by the first two waves of the coronavirus pandemic and then has continued to experience persistent elevated mortality since mid-2021.
“Compared to other Western European and Nordic territories, England & Wales experienced the third highest excess mortality since the start of the pandemic but ranks nearer to the middle of the pack when considering all territories analysed.
“New Zealand is notable as the only country with negative cumulative excess mortality, meaning the number of deaths over the period were lower than expected.”
The CMI has used data from the Human Mortality Database (HMD) to analyse mortality in England & Wales and 23 other international territories. The analysis investigates excess mortality for the 24 territories from week 10 of 2020 (broadly the start of the coronavirus pandemic in England & Wales) to the end of 2022 and compares the periods before and after week 26 of 2021 (since when mortality in England & Wales was markedly less volatile than earlier in the pandemic).
The impact of the pandemic on mortality and the timing of pandemic waves varies significantly between territories but the analysis shows that, when considering the entire pandemic period, England & Wales had the ninth highest excess mortality (controlling for population size and age) of all 24 international territories analysed, with the third highest of the twelve Western European and Nordic territories considered.
Compared to other territories, England & Wales was particularly badly affected in 2020 and early 2021, with the second highest cumulative excess mortality to week 30 of 2020 and the fourth highest to week 9 of 2021. Its excess mortality since mid-2021 is the third highest for European territories.
Of all territories analysed with data to the end of 2022, cumulative excess mortality to the end of 2022 ranged from −4% to +65%. The three territories with the highest cumulative excess mortality were Bulgaria (+65%), Poland (+46%) and the USA (+45%). New Zealand had the lowest cumulative excess mortality (−4%) and was the only country with fewer deaths than expected across the pandemic. Australia had the second lowest (+1%) and Norway the third lowest (+3%).
The analysis is publicly available in CMI Working Paper 180.
Cumulative excess mortality to the end of 2022 for each territory is shown in the table below.
|Territory||Cumulative excess from week 10 of 2020||Cumulative excess from week 26 of 2021|
|England & Wales||+26%||+11%|
|Republic of Korea||+1% [Data to week 30 of 2022 only]||+7% [Data to week 30 of 2022 only]|
|Russia||+25% [Data to end of 2020 only]||n/a [Data to end of 2020 only]|
The two charts below compare cumulative excess mortality in England & Wales from week 10 of 2020 (broadly the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe and North America) to (i) Western European and Nordic territories; and (ii) other territories.
- Results for Australia, Italy, New Zealand and the USA are calculated using an expected mortality baseline that is calculated using a different data period than that used for all other territories, due to data being unavailable for these territories from the start of 2010.