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Civil Registration System (CRS) data for 2020 includes a key metric that shows how difficult it was for people to access healthcare facilities during the pandemic: over 45% of all deaths recorded this year -there occurred in the absence of medical care, the highest percentage rate ever.
The data also shows a sharp decline in deaths recorded in hospitals and other medical facilities in 2020.
For several months in 2020, when the pandemic first gripped the world, non-Covid medical services were suspended or barely functioning in
India, with 80 to 100% of beds in several hospitals reserved for Covid patients. As a result, a large number of people were unable to receive medical care for illnesses unrelated to Covid.
CRS data captured this agony for the first time.
The proportion of people who died without medical attention rose from 34.5% of all recorded deaths in 2019 to 45% in 2020, the biggest jump in a single year.
Simultaneously, deaths in institutions fell from 32.1% in 2019 to 28% in 2020, the steepest drop on record.
These two data points do not indicate a new or unusual phenomenon. The proportion of deaths in the absence of medical care has steadily increased over the past decade, and the proportion of deaths in custody has decreased.
What is new, however, is the quantum of rise and fall this year.
In 2011, only 10% of all recorded deaths occurred in the absence of medical care. But it was also the period when less than 70% of all deaths in the country were registered – just 67% in 2011. Institutional deaths constituted a mass because most of them would be registered, unlike deaths at home.
As the level of death registrations increased, the proportion of deaths outside medical facilities also increased.
In 2017 and 2018, the proportion of deaths in custody and those without medical care were roughly equal, each accounting for around a third of all recorded deaths. The remaining third were deaths that required no medical attention, or received medical care at home or for which details were not available.
In 2019, the proportion of deaths recorded in the absence of medical care had exceeded that of deaths in custody. But due to the pandemic, an unusual acceleration in these trends has taken place in 2020. These trends are expected to be reinforced in 2021 data, when a large number of Covid deaths also occurred due to lack of access to hospital care.
Overall, CRS data, released by the Registrar General’s Office on Tuesday, showed that 81.16 lakh deaths were recorded in the country in 2020, about 6% more than the number of the previous year. , which corresponds to the trend of increasing registrations. births and deaths.