A new analysis published at the scientific journal “Lancet” has provided further evidence that Covid policies implemented by public health experts around the globe failed to substantially lower excess deaths.
As the Lancet article, “Estimating excess mortality due to the COVID-19 pandemic: a systematic analysis of COVID-19-related mortality, 2020–21,” explains, “the magnitude and distribution of many other causes of death might have changed because of social, economic, and behavioural responses to the pandemic, including strict lockdowns. Under these conditions, excess mortality can provide a more accurate assessment of the total mortality impact of the COVID-19 pandemic than reported COVID-19 deaths.”
“Our excess mortality estimates reflect the full impact of the pandemic on mortality around the world, and not only deaths directly attributable to SARS-CoV-2 infection,” the article explains about its model, which incorporated all-cause mortality reports for 74 countries and territories and 266 subnational locations.
The main finding of the study was its estimate that about three times as many people died worldwide due to the “global pandemic” than is suggested by Covid-related mortality figures.
“Although reported COVID-19 deaths between Jan 1, 2020, and Dec 31, 2021, totalled 5.94 million worldwide, we estimate that 18.2 million (95% uncertainty interval 17·1–19·6) people died worldwide because of the COVID-19 pandemic (as measured by excess mortality) over that period. The global all-age rate of excess mortality due to the COVID-19 pandemic was 120.3 deaths (113·1–129·3) per 100 000 of the population, and excess mortality rate exceeded 300 deaths per 100,000 of the population in 21 countries. The number of excess deaths due to COVID-19 was largest in the regions of south Asia, north Africa and the Middle East, and eastern Europe.”
However, the “global pandemic” did not directly cause millions of these estimated deaths; the Covid policies, such as lockdowns, contributed greatly to the final tallies, as the Lancet study itself notes (cited above). Agency matters.
An exhaustive Johns Hopkins University comparative analysis published in January found that strict lockdowns failed to significantly reduce Covid-related deaths.
“Lockdowns in the U.S. and Europe had little or no impact in reducing deaths from COVID-19, according to a new analysis by researchers at Johns Hopkins University,” the Washington Times reported. “The lockdowns during the early phase of the pandemic in 2020 reduced COVID-19 mortality by about 0.2%, said the broad review of multiple scientific studies.”
“We find no evidence that lockdowns, school closures, border closures, and limiting gatherings have had a noticeable effect on COVID-19 mortality,” the researchers wrote.
Importantly, the Covid lockdowns and policy mandates were unprecedented in their scope for any global pandemic in world history. They caused a massive amount of economic damage and social division, but produced virtually insignificant net benefits for public health.
“Overall, we conclude that lockdowns are not an effective way of reducing mortality rates during a pandemic, at least not during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the authors conclude. “Our results are in line with the World Health Organization Writing Group (2006), who state, “Reports from the 1918 influenza pandemic indicate that social-distancing measures did not stop or appear to dramatically reduce transmission.”
“The use of lockdowns is a unique feature of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the authors added. “Lockdowns have not been used to such a large extent during any of the pandemics of the past century. However, lockdowns during the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic have had devastating effects. They have contributed to reducing economic activity, raising unemployment, reducing schooling, causing political unrest, contributing to domestic violence, and undermining liberal democracy. These costs to society must be compared to the benefits of lockdowns, which our meta-analysis has shown are marginal at best. Such a standard benefit-cost calculation leads to a strong conclusion: lockdowns should be rejected out of hand as a pandemic policy instrument.”
The Covid-19 pandemic is also unique in that the overwhelming number of people who died with the virus were near life expectancy and had underlying health conditions. In 2020 that the average age of mortality for Covid-19 related deaths (77 years old) was about that of life expectancy (78 years old). It is now estimated globally to be between 73 and 79 years old. As noted by the CDC, 95% of all Covid-related deaths have at least one ‘comorbidity,’ and the average number of Covid-related comorbidities is 4.0.
As reported exclusively here in November, such all-cause mortality rates did not decrease as expected in advanced nations despite the substantial vaccination rates. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), show that excess mortality rates did not decline in 2021 in many advanced nations, despite lockdowns and relatively high vaccination rates.
In the United States, for example, despite the vaccines, there was no significant decline in excess mortality. (There were actually more reported Covid-related deaths in 2021 than in 2020.) The U.K. similarly saw no overall decline in excess mortality.
Covid policies were imposed in many cases around the world by emergency decree, without a consideration for democratic processes, medical norms such as informed consent, legal recourse in a court of law due to liability shields, or respect for individuals’ constitutionally protected due process rights. Vaccine and mask mandates, as well as strict lockdowns, nonetheless inflicted massive amounts of economic damage, social division, and mental health trauma on large segments of the respective populations.
Excess mortality rates are the gold standard for evaluating whether the ‘experts’ succeeded in preventing Covid deaths. That data is in. And the answer is ‘no.’
OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.