Peru – Covid19 deaths are double the count after official revision
Peru has more than doubled its Covid death toll following a review, making it the country with the world’s highest rate per capita, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The official death toll is now more than 180,000, up from 69,342, in a country of about 33 million people. PM Violeta Bermudez told reporters that the number was increased on the advice of Peruvian and international experts.
According to data from Johns Hopkins University, Peru now has the highest death rate per capita, at about 500 per 100,000 people, surpassing Hungary’s death rate – previously the highest in the world – which stood at about 300 per 100,000 people.
Peru’s health minister Oscar Ugarte said: “What is being said is that a significant number of deaths were not classified as caused by Covid-19.” She added that the criteria for assigning coronavirus as a cause of death were changed, and that previously only those who “had a positive diagnostic test” were considered to have died from the virus.
The pandemic has only intensified the political turmoil in Peru, which was rocked by the impeachment of President Martín Vizcarra in November. He was one of four presidents to serve in five years, three of whom spent time in jail during bribery investigations.
The virus is spreading faster in South America than on any other continent, according to official data, with five nations among the top 10 globally for new cases reported per person.