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Why South Asia’s COVID-19 Numbers Are So Low (For Now)

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  • Why South Asia’s COVID-19 Numbers Are So Low (For Now)

    June 24
    With 1.94 billion people, South Asia is home to almost exactly one-quarter of the world’s population. The region, comprising eight countries — Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Bhutan, the Maldives, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal — is extremely poor, densely populated and geographically close to China, where the SARS-CoV-2 virus originated. The COVID-19 pandemic was expected to be a “perfect storm” for the region. However, as of June 22, South Asia had reported a total of only 765,082 confirmed cases and 19,431 deaths, accounting for just 8.5% of global infections and 4.1% of world fatalities — even as the numbers in some South Asian countries have spiked drastically in the past few weeks.
    Another reason for the relatively low number of COVID-19 cases and fatalities in South Asia, experts say, could be poor documentation of deaths. According to a 2018 UNICEF report, only 60% of South Asian children under five years of age are registered and have a birth certificate, and deaths are registered at an even lower rate in many countries in the region. The report showed that Bangladesh missed recording over 90% of its deaths in 2014, while India missed 29%, Nepal missed 25%, Bhutan missed 19%, and the Maldives missed just under 10%. Data for Afghanistan and Pakistan were not available in the report, but Bishop said that Afghanistan does not have an official death registry. Pakistan, meanwhile, had almost no death registration mechanisms until a decade ago.
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  • #2
    add Indonesia,Malaysia,Australia,Russia ... and i.e. Mongolia.
    And Eastern,Northern Europe,Africa

    OTOH Western Europe,America.

    Looks genetic. Or Spanish, English speech produces too much droplets ?!
    I'm interested in expert panflu damage estimates
    my current links: ILI-charts:


    • #3
      I do not think it is more than a late start to the outbreak and it is too early to draw any conclusions. I expect the big 3, in population terms, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, to have a unpleasant time of it. Dense populations, low incomes, insufficient health capacity do not lead to good outcomes.