COVID-19 has affected over 10 million people in 213 countries and territories. From this number, just over 514,000 people have succumbed to the virus, while almost six million have recovered, making the case fatality rate (CFR) for those who contract COVID-19 8%. As of July 1st, 2020, the worldwide mortality rate is 4.89%, meaning it is down 2.41% from the global peak of 7.30% on April 24th, 2020. Knowing the CFR of the virus is crucial and therefore 32 countries were examined to understand their individual rates.
When looking at the countries with the largest amount of cases, we can see that this does not necessarily mean that they also have a high mortality rate. Of course there are countries which do correlate with a large amount of cases and deaths, such as the U.S. and Brazil, which rank number one and two on both scales with 130,134 deaths and 59, 656 deaths, respectively; however, a few go against the grain. There are countries like Russia and Pakistan which both have over one hundred thousand cases with low death rates of 2.06% and 1.44%, with deaths in the thousands. We can also look at France and Germany who vary significantly in their mortality rates, 18.11% to 4.61%, even though they have almost the same number of cases and Germany has a larger population. Interestingly, India which is populated with 1.3 billion people only has 590,001 cases, with a mortality rate of 2.97%. This is quite impressive considering the amount of people in the state. Belarus is also interesting to look at because despite taking no precautions and having one of the highest infection rates in Eastern Europe, it has a mortality rate of less than 1%. Although these are the official numbers, if these statistics seem unusual or unbelievable, it is due to the accuracy of the CFR and the fact that comparing states using the CFR is difficult.Numbers are important, but can also be misleading if given no context. When viewing the mortality rates, one can see that Yemen has the highest percentage with 26.84%. This seems outrageously large, especially compared to the raw data of the United States’ rate of only 4.84%. The U.S. is the leading country in COVID cases, but has a lower CFR, thus making it seem that less deaths have occurred than in places such as Belgium, France, and Mexico, which have 15.86%, 18.11%, and 12.28%, respectively. This is why it is also important to include the total number of cases and deaths, because these data sets show us a larger picture, in which the U.S. has almost twice as many deaths that the four above mentioned countries combined.