Global COVID deaths in 2021 have topped all of last year’s
COVID-19 deaths in 2021 worldwide have surpassed the total number of COVID-19 deaths in all of 2020, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of Johns Hopkins data yesterday. As of Jun 10, 1,884,146 people have died of COVID-19 in 2021, compared with the 1,880,510 in 2020.
The numbers highlight how unevenly the pandemic has spread, now hitting poorer nations harder, as they scramble to vaccinate their populations.
South America hardest-hit continent
The United States, Brazil, and India have the most COVID-19 deaths, according to Statista, but even as these outbreaks have started to slow or decline, other countries struggle with vaccine access, new variants, and burdened healthcare systems.
South America is currently the hardest-hit continent, with more than 40 new daily cases per 100,000 people in countries like Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Suriname, according to the New York Times global COVID-19 tracker. One of those countries, Colombia, saw its highest COVID-19 death toll Jun 9, with 550 deaths, and 97.6% of its intensive care unit beds for COVID-19 patients were occupied, according to The City Paper Bogota.
Brazil is down to 28 to 40 new cases per 100,000 people, according to the Times tracker (average, 58,214 new cases per day), and a Reuters story says President Jair Bolsonaro has hinted that the country may allow those fully vaccinated or previously infected to ditch their face masks. The same story notes Bolsonaro’s history of dismissing lockdowns and physical distancing steps, as well as the country’s low COVID vaccination rate. Only 24% of the population is partially vaccinated, and 10% are fully vaccinated.
Across the ocean in India, the country’s health ministry reported 6,148 new COVID-19 deaths yesterday, with new cases remaining below 100,000 for the third consecutive day, according to CNBC. That marks the deadliest day for any country anywhere in the world.