The coronavirus death toll currently stands at almost 300,000 around the globe. In the UK, there have been 33,614 deaths as of May 14. Scientists are still undertaking research into the virus about who exactly has the highest risk of death from the deadly virus.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported up to May 1, there were 33,407 deaths registered in England and Wales involving COVID-19.
The majority of deaths were among people aged over 65 at a total of 30,978 deaths.
In total, 59 percent of these occurred it the over-85 age group.
Only 12 percent of deaths have been in the under 65 categories, a total of 4,066 deaths.
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Pensioners are 34 times more likely to die of coronavirus than working age Britons.
Age, however, is just one factor that impacts a person’s vulnerability.
Research has revealed ethnicity, deprivation, pre-existing health conditions and occupation also affect to an individual’s risk of dying.
The death rate among the working population differs by gender at 9.9 per 100,000 people and 5.2 per 100,000 women.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said people from ethnic minority backgrounds are “disproportionately” dying of COVID-19.
There were at least 3,378 deaths of black and minority ethnic (BAME) individuals in hospitals in England up to 5 May.
This means BAME persons accounted for 17 percent of all deaths as of May 5.
Deprivation also has a role in the death rate in the UK.
According to the ONS, the death rate in the poorest communities in England and Wales is twice as high as the wealthiest.
Issues with self-isolation in larger households may also play a factor.
One’s occupation also has a bearing, with healthcare workers having much greater exposure to the virus.
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Scientists have said they have developed a way of showing people their personal risk of dying form COVID-19.
The University College London’s coronavirus calculator factors in their age, sex and any underlying health conditions to work out their risk of death.
Additionally, the calculator tool calculates one’s risk-based upon the current risk of infection and the strain on the NHS.
The tool was made public in a report in The Lancet which used data from roughly 3.8 million health records and based on conclusions on England having a 10 percent infection rate and 20 percent of people having a high-risk condition.
The scientists have warned there may be up to 73,000 deaths as a result of the outbreak depending on lockdown easing measures.
Dr Amitava Banerjee said: “For example, we show how a 66-year-old man with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has a 6 percent risk of dying over the next year and there are 25,000 ‘patients like me’ (ie men of the same age with the same condition) in England.
“The calculator estimates 164 excess COVID-19-related deaths on top of the expected 1,639 deaths over a year in patients in a similar situation.”
He added: “Our findings show the mortality risk for these vulnerable groups increases significantly and could lead to thousands of avoidable deaths.”
Author Professor Harry Hemmingway said keeping the infection rate low among members of the public is important to keeping vulnerable persons safe.
He said doctors “need to continue to deliver high-quality medical care to vulnerable people to prevent excess deaths in those who are not infected with coronavirus.”
Professor Hemmingway said: “Our findings emphasise the importance of delivering consistent preventive interventions to people with a wide range of diseases, who are cared for by a wide range of clinical specialities.
“This policy is only possible because we have an NHS able to use system-wide data for patient benefit.”
You can try the calculator here.
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