Morfeld, Peter and Erren, Thomas C. (2020). Deaths in nine regions of Italy in February/March 2020: Mortality Excess Loupe for SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19-Epidemiology in Germany. Gesundheitswesen, 82 (5). S. 400 - 407. STUTTGART: GEORG THIEME VERLAG KG. ISSN 1439-4421

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Italy is particularly affected by SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19. Recently, Colombo and Impicciatore compared the deaths in 1084 selected municipalities between 21 February 2020 and 21 March 2020 with deaths in the same time period in 2015 to 2019. We extend analyses of data from the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT) and calculate SMRs for all causes of death in the nine selected regions of Italy, separately for men and women and summarized. We analyze the effect of covariables by Poisson modelling and discuss the limitations of the current elaborations. We conclude: In agreement with Colombo and Impicciatore, in the particular corona situation, this mortality excess loupe - assuming otherwise constant determinants of death - can be a virus-test-independent tool to determine mortality effects of SARS-CoV-2. The current loupe is focused on municipalities with increases of more than 20% deaths in March 2020 compared to the average deaths on the same days in 2015-2019. The time window of investigation could be opened before 21 February 2020 to detect masked increases in mortality before the first COVID-19 death was ascertained. The current loupe conveys pronounced mortality increases also in regions that were not considered to be corona hotspots. In this respect, even in the absence of representative virus test results, mortality data can be important indicators of the distribution or spread of a newly acting factor. Overall, it is advisable to carry out SMR analyses for Germany on a regular basis, differentiated by region, gender, age group and cause of death. Such analyses can contribute to the early detection and evaluation of the severity of a deadly pandemic (burden of disease) as well as to monitoring the dynamic spread of a factor such as SARS-CoV-2. SMR analyses can also be used to assess and evaluate both desired and undesired effects of measures taken against SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 - and possibly other epidemics or pandemics.

Item Type: Journal Article
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-334822
DOI: 10.1055/a-1160-5859
Journal or Publication Title: Gesundheitswesen
Volume: 82
Number: 5
Page Range: S. 400 - 407
Date: 2020
Place of Publication: STUTTGART
ISSN: 1439-4421
Language: German
Faculty: Unspecified
Divisions: Unspecified
Subjects: no entry
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Public, Environmental & Occupational HealthMultiple languages


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