Covid-19 drove deaths up 16% in OECD countries, hit mental health, too, report finds

Life expectancy has fallen the most in Spain and the United States, the organization said, with the United States losing 1.6 years of life per capita on average over the one-and-a-half-year pandemic so far, and Spain losing 1.5 years, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development reports. .

The report found little change in the countries with the longest comparative life expectancy. “Japan, Switzerland and Spain lead a large group of 27 OECD countries in which life expectancy at birth exceeded 80 years in 2019,” the report said.

“The second group, including the United States and a number of Central and Eastern European countries, had a life expectancy of 77 to 80 years. Life expectancy in Mexico and Latvia was less than 76 years.” Life expectancy has been growing over the past century, although this growth has slowed in recent years and the epidemic has had a severe impact.

“COVID 19 has disproportionately affected vulnerable populations. More than 90% of the recorded deaths from COVID 19 have occurred among people over 60 years of age. There has also been a clear social gradation, with disadvantaged people, and those living in areas disadvantaged, most ethnic minorities and immigrants are more vulnerable to infection and death.”

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, which includes rich and middle-income countries, whose reports set some international standards for comparing spending, living standards, health outcomes and other national goals, releases regular reports that attempt to analyze how health spending affects outcomes such as cancer care and life expectancy.

This year’s report found that the death rate from Covid-19 in the United States was close to the OECD average.

The group, which reports on countries as diverse as India, Indonesia, Japan, Switzerland and the United States, analyzed Covid-19 death rates to find 1,824 Covid-19 deaths per million inhabitants in 2020 and the first half of 2021 for the United States. The US had 13,197 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people – above the OECD average. Additionally, the United States has average vaccination rates, with 55% of the population fully vaccinated at the time of writing.

A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that life expectancy in the United States is declining by more than a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The UK had 2,232 Covid-19 deaths per million inhabitants, 11,608 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 population and a vaccination rate of 66%. Japan had 117 Covid-19 deaths per million inhabitants, 1,347 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 population and a vaccination rate of 61.2%. Canada had 699 Covid-19 deaths per million inhabitants, 4,347 Covid-19 cases per 100,000 population and a vaccination rate of 71.2%.

The pandemic raises global rates of depression and anxiety

The report found significant increases in some mental illnesses with the epidemic.

“The impact of the pandemic on mental health has been enormous, with prevalence of anxiety and depression at more than twice the levels observed before the crisis in most countries with available data, most notably in Mexico, the United Kingdom and the United States,” she added.

“The prevalence of anxiety and depression in early 2020 was double or more than the level observed in previous years in a number of countries, including Belgium, France, the United Kingdom and the United States,” she added.

“In France, the United Kingdom and the United States, the prevalence of symptoms of anxiety and depression increased during periods when COVID-19 cases and deaths were at their peak, and when increased containment measures were in place,” she said, citing reports. From the public health departments of France and the United Kingdom and the US National Center for Health Statistics.

Research shows that life expectancy in the United States has fallen by more than a year during the coronavirus pandemic

“The impact of the pandemic on mental health has been particularly challenging for doctors, nurses, long-term care workers and other health care workers who work in close proximity to patients,” the organization said in its report.

“Healthcare workers have reported high rates of anxiety, depression, burnout, and employee turnover since the start of the pandemic,” the report said.

“In the United States, a survey of frontline health workers found that more than three-fifths (62%) reported that stress or anxiety about COVID 19 affected their mental health negatively, and nearly half (49%) reported that stress has caused It affected their physical health.” Nearly a third of respondents reported needing or receiving mental health services due to the pandemic.

And nurses were probably affected more than doctors. The report, citing a survey by the International Council of Nurses, added that “a survey of 33 national nursing associations found that three-fifths reported occasionally or regularly receiving reports from nurses about mental health distress associated with the epidemic.”

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“In a labor force survey across the European Union, 70% of health workers – more than any other sector of the workforce – reported that they believed their work puts them at risk of contracting COVID 19,” the report reads.

“In a March 2020 survey of healthcare workers in Italy, nearly half (49%) showed symptoms of PTSD and a quarter of them showed symptoms of depression. Frontline workers had significantly higher odds of developing PTSD than those .who did not report working with Covid-19 patients.”

“An April 2020 survey of healthcare professionals in Spain found that nearly three-fifths of respondents reported symptoms of anxiety (59%) and/or PTSD (57%), with nearly half (46%) having symptoms. In England (UK), nearly half of respondents to the NHS (National Health Service) staff survey (44%) reported feeling unwell due to work-related stress within the past year, an increase of 9% from 2019. “

The pandemic is driving up healthcare spending too

The report found that the pandemic has caused an increase in health spending in many of the organization’s 38 member states.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a sharp increase in health spending across the OECD. Combined with a decline in economic activity, average health spending to GDP (GDP) ratio has jumped from 8.8% in 2019 to 9.7% in 2020, across OECD countries with available data.

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“Countries hard hit by the pandemic are reporting unprecedented increases. The UK has estimated an increase from 10.2% in 2019 to 12.8% in 2020, while Slovenia is forecasting its share of health spending to rise from 8.5% to more than 10%,” according to the report. is reading.

The proportion in the United States was the highest for all OECD countries so far in 2019, at 16.8% of GDP, but the figure was not available for 2020. “With the onset of the COVID 19 pandemic, preliminary data for 2020 indicate a level Sharp increase in public health spending by about 5.1% on average.”

The United States remained at the top of the group in terms of public spending on health. “The United States spends significantly more than any other country (nearly $11,000 per capita, adjusted by purchasing power, in 2019),” the report states. For comparison, Japan spends an average of $4,691 per person on healthcare, and the UK spends $4,500.

Per capita healthcare spending is also high in Switzerland, Norway and Germany.

The report noted that seven countries spend significantly less per capita on average on healthcare but have a higher-than-average life expectancy. The report stated that “these seven countries are Italy, Korea, Portugal, Spain, Slovenia, Greece and Israel.” “The only country in the lower right quartile is the United States, with spending significantly higher than all other OECD countries, but lower life expectancy than the OECD average.”

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