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How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/14/2020 10:12:38

{Canidae} Kretoma 
Level 59
A long time ago, i made this thread:

Instead of bashing on one country, let us rate all the countrys performances with this specific problem.

Countries with higher population ages and worse medical systems tend to have more deaths per capita.
With the exeption of the USA, really small states (often islands) tend to lead in per capita cases on each continent.


Asia was the origin place of the virus. Despite this and being by far the most populated place on Earth, in general Asians tend to fare rather well. Noteworthy seems to be the high cases in the island Persian Gulf emirates and the Caucasus. Armenia and the countries sourrounding it (primarily Georgia and Iran) have a clear lead in deaths compared to other Asian countries. On the opposite site of the spectrum, continental Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia) have managed to get really low per capita cases despite being next to China. Logically, they also have almost zero deaths. The best medical care seems to be situated in Singapore, which has far fewer deaths compared to its cases. The worst medical care seems to be situated in Iran, where a far higher percentage of people die compared to the number of cases.

Oceania has the advantage of being far away from most of humanity and therefore has it more easy to deal with the pandemic. Not surprisingly, the region fares best out of all on earth. Noteworthy is here the horrible performance of French Polynesia, which has comparable case numbers to the Caucasus. They also lead in deaths, thou not even half as bad as the top 3 in Asia.

Africa despite it being seen by others as backwards and narrowmined has dealt with the pandemic really well. The worst contenders with per capita cases are ironically western offshorts with rather high european minded populations (French islands of Mayotte and Réunion, Cabo Verde and South Africa). Generally speeking, North Africa has it worse that those south of the Sahara desert. Still, no country reaches even half the per capita cases of French Polynesia. Deaths are also worst in the leading case countries. The East Africa coast performes the best with the 60 million inhabitants Tanzania only having 509 cases and 21 deaths. In Egypt the case to death ratio is by far the worst, while Botwana and Guinea perform the best here. It would be easy to assume this being the case because of their population pyramids, by the case of Egypt tells this is not the primarily factor at play here.

Europe has some of the worst per capita case performers. The top 4 being the micro- and minor states of Andorra, Luxembourg, Montenegro and San Marino. The only pattern to see with the european cases is that generally, the Nordics (with the notable exeption of Sweden) fare best, even thou they still fail in comparision to for example Indochina which is also far more densely populated. From the bigger countries, Czechia and Belgium lead in cases, but the next contenders are not far behind and all European states have a rather high case percentage. Notable is the by far highest lead in per capita deaths of Belgium, who even tops San Marino and the 33% less deadly Italy in 3rd place. With the exeption of Monaco, the Nordics also have the fewest deaths. In the comparision of survivability, the NHS of the UK compares horrible to other european countries. The lethality of the corona virus is here a 3,47% compared to Belgiums 2,95%. The best performer in this field is Monaco with a deceased rate of just 0,45%. Of course this can easely be explained by the fact that Monaco is full of rich tax avoiders who have private healthcare.

South America is following the sad pattern by now, the French oversea territory of Guiana leads here as well, followed by Argentina and Brazil. Still, the South America top 3 would be European average. Uruguay and Venezuela have the fewest per capita cases, they outperform the best european countries by 100%, but still fall short compared to all other continents top contenders. The uncontested lead in per capta deaths has Peru with more deaths per capita than Italy. Generally speaking, countries south of the Equator fare worse than those north of it in South America. Venezuela and Uruguay have the fewest per capita deaths as well, only toped by the totally unreachable Falkland Islands.

North America is a special case, with the USA leading in total (world record) , per capita cases (here just below Belgium) and per capita deaths. They still fare better in a comparison to Europa and are comparable to the South Americans in per capita deaths, but have douple the case number percentages. Bestby far fares the isolated Greenland. The worst lethality seems to have Mexico with a death percentage of 9,12% (world record!). Why this is the case, i have no idea. :( The least lethal infections seem to be happening in Curaçao, what has an even lower rate (0,30%) than Monaco.

primary source:

Note, the interpretations are from me and not from experts. If you have better stuff, feel free to show it. Also, if you find mistakes with my English, do correct me if you like. :D

Edited 12/14/2020 14:18:23
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/14/2020 12:14:30

Cata Cauda
Level 59
You are assuming the detection and documentation methods for cases and deaths are reliable. Africa for example has low cases per capita, because not enough tests are conducted in the first place. A lot of cases go unreported. Which explains why (as you mentioned) countries with a high percentage of Europeans report more cases by capita.
And what stops officials from reporting too many deaths? More deaths mean population surveillance measures (like tracking apps) are easier to justify. I can see our lunatic chancellor Kurz in Austria doing that.
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/14/2020 13:35:29

Diety Emperor Cacao, God Ruler of the Universe 
Level 57
Subsaharan Africa has had issues with diseases such as Ebola, Malaria, and Cholera.

I really doubt that such a low population of covid cases are a thing there. African nations tend to be the least sanitary in the world. They also tend to lack finances.

I think they are just under reporting.
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/14/2020 13:39:18

Math Wolf 
Level 64
Agree with Cata Cauda. Reporting reliable results has been a major issue although to be clear, underreporting has been a much bigger problem than overreporting.

Belgium for example, is one of the only countries that from the start included all confirmed and suspected Covid deaths in their numbers, while most countries only included confirmed Covid deaths or even (on purpose) misclassified Covid deaths as "pneumonia".* However, Belgium also had a high number of cases in elderly care homes, so that also increased the death rate substantially. Being able to look at excess mortality in 2020 compared to the surrounding years will give much more reliable information about not only number of people dying from Covid-19, and also how many of those would have died in the following years because they were a fragile population to start from (old, many co-morbidities, ...)

* Sidenote: to make it clear: pneunomia or heart failure are the direct Covid-caused reasons of death. A virus doesn't kill anyone, it causes malfunctioning in the body which in turn can kill people. Similarly, people with HIV/aids will never die from the virus itself, but from secondary infections that the compromised immune system can't fight properly anymore, and associated malfunctioning that finally have the ability to kill (e.g. lung damage from pneumonia, flu, tuberculosis infection, ...)

Generally, in Africa, there are several factors likely at play, not all properly understood yet. Some of my close colleagues are working on this, so I have some inside information.
- The infection rate, despite being underestimated, does truly seem to be considerably lower than elsewhere in the world, hinting that people may have some protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection. Reasons are unclear, but given the regions in which this effect seems to be most prevalent, tuberculosis and ebola vaccins are suspected to potentially provide partial protection.
- It may surprise many people, but in Africa, people have a lot more experience with contact tracing (a common practice in tuberculosis and during ebola epidemics) and deadly infectious diseases (HIV, tuberculosis, malaria, chikungunya, ...). In several countries, lockdown type of restrictions were implemented early, after images of Italian hospitals reached them. This, and an increased awareness may have reduced the early spread in communities.
- While temperature does not seem to play a major role in the transmission of the virus, spending more time inside in badly ventilated rooms does drastically increase the risk of transmission. Obviously, in large parts of sub-Saharan Africa, people do not spend much time in badly ventilated rooms as it is most of the time too warm for this.
- Even when people get infected with SARS-CoV-2, they seem less likely to develop Covid-19 symptoms. Exact reasons for this are unknown, but there are a variety of logical options being studied:
-> The same potential partial protection from tuberculosis vaccins
-> A population with less risk factors: skewing younger and potentially less so-called comorbidities (e.g. there is less diabetes and overweight in sub-Saharan Africa, while HIV, a common risk factor in sub-Saharan African seems to be NOT associated with Covid-19 mortality)
-> A population that may have become historically more resilient against a disease like SARS-CoV-2 due to long exposure to deadly infectious diseases. This results in potentially selecting out individuals that would be at increased risk otherwise (e.g. large child mortality due to pneumonia in Africa selects out a group of people who, if they would have survived, be potentially at increased risk for SARS-CoV-2 mortality, and have children who also would be at increased risk, etc...).

It's very hard to prove or disprove any of those assumptions from an epidemiological point of view, and likely a combination of them will be at play in practice.
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/14/2020 15:29:26

│ [20] │MASTER│ Rikku │ I love my wife │ • apex │
Level 61
with the USA leading.

USA USA USA #1 best in the world
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/15/2020 05:33:21

Georg Friedrich Ferdinand, Prinz von Preußen
Level 56
Monaco. It nears the top of my list of countries I want to move to when I get rich. The places that fare the best have Authoritarian governments, with a few notable exceptions. The places that fare the worst have Democratic governments, with a few notable exceptions.
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/16/2020 18:46:14

{N.W.} Hi
Level 59
The sad bit is really if you become rich, unless you are already rich
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/17/2020 05:22:22

Georg Friedrich Ferdinand, Prinz von Preußen
Level 56
We are far from rich.
How different countries deal with the pandemic: 12/24/2020 02:11:03

Level 57
rich is relative

to someone living in a favela we are rich, but to someone living in Beverley hills we are poor
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