Despite surge in Covid-19 cases, SA's death rate is among the lowest

16 July 2020 - 16:52
By Ernest Mabuza
SA has registered the eighth highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world, but its death rate of 75 deaths per million people ranks among the lowest in the top 10.
Image: Picture: MICHELE SPATARI/AFP SA has registered the eighth highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world, but its death rate of 75 deaths per million people ranks among the lowest in the top 10.

While SA has overtaken Spain to register the eighth highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world, it has the second lowest number of fatalities per one million of the population out of the top 10 countries by caseload.

SA on Wednesday recorded 12,757 new cases of Covid-19 over a 24 hour cycle — overtaking, at least for now, Spain to become the eighth worst-hit nation in terms of caseload. The cumulative number of infections in SA was 311,049 as of Wednesday.

According to Worldometer, which updates global Covid-19 stats daily, the latest cumulative number of infections put SA just behind Mexico, which has recorded 317,635 cases.

But the numbers show SA's death rate per one million of the population is not as high as in many other countries.

Of the top 10 countries with the most cases in the world, the UK with 664 and Spain at 608 registered the highest number of deaths per million, followed by the US with 423 deaths per million and Brazil with 423.

SA has registered 4,453 deaths, which equates to 75 deaths per million, while India has registered the lowest number of deaths at 18 per one million.

Russia has registered 82 deaths per million, far less than Mexico at 286 deaths per million. Peru and Chile have both registered 376 deaths per million.

Other countries with fewer Covid-19 cases than SA have also registered much higher death numbers per million people than SA. These include:

  • Iran, with 267,061 cases and 162 deaths per million;
  • Italy, with 243,506 cases and 579 deaths per million; and
  • France, with 173,304 cases and 461 deaths per million.

Of the 10 countries with the most cases, the UK has conducted the most tests, with 183,531 tests per million of the population. The UK is followed by Russia (164,821), the US (135,463) and Spain (128,893) in terms of testing.

By comparison, SA has tested 38,393 people per million, Brazil 23,098 and India 9,228.