SANTIAGO – The Health Ministry in Chile reported on Sunday, June 28, the number of coronavirus deaths by confirmed PCR test had risen to 5,509. The Department of Statistics (DEIS) of the same ministry reports a total of 6,089 confirmed Covid-19 deaths, plus an additional 2,846 probable Covid-19 deaths. The varying methodology used in Chile might be confusing, but one thing is clear: the number of Covid-19 deaths in Chile is higher than reported at daily press conferences.
Chile is one of the few countries in the world that does not report its daily Covid-19 deaths according to the recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO). It publishes only the number of deaths backed up by a PCR test and does not include suspected cases with pending PCRs. Chile’s statistics department, however, does follow the WHO recommendations, resulting in a higher number of Covid-19 deaths than is reported by the Chilean Health Ministry each day.
With the arrival of Health Minister Paris, the statistics department is publishing its report every week. The numbers released today, June 28, by the DEIS show that, if Chile followed the WHO recommendations, the number of deaths would be near 9,000, instead of just 5,509 cases as the Health Ministry reported today.
According to the latest report from the DEIS, there are 6,089 deaths confirmed by PCR test and another 2,846 that are suspected Covid-19 deaths. The resulting 8,935 total would push Chile up in the global rankings. Some experts suggest this is why the Health Ministry is using its own more conservative guidelines for inclusion.
If Chile followed the WHO recommendations and used the DEIS numbers, it would notch about 470 deaths per million inhabitants instead of the current 288. This would move Chile up five places from 13th highest in the world to just 8th, above the United States (387 per million) and even France (456 per million).
Editor-In-Chief Boris van der Spek is the founder of Chile Today.