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COVID-19 is third leading cause of death in 2021

A caretaker is seen inside the cemetery in Marikina City, Nov. 1, 2021. — PHILIPPINE STAR/ MICHAEL VARCAS

CORONAVIRUS DISEASE 2019 (COVID-19) was the third leading cause of death in the country in 2021, preliminary data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.

Of the 766,126 total deaths in 2021, the top causes were ischaemic heart diseases (136,575) and cerebrovascular diseases (74,262).

Deaths associated with COVID-19 are classified into “virus identified” and “not identified” at the time of death.

There were 74,008 deaths from COVID-19 “virus identified,” representing 9.7% of the total deaths, making it the third leading cause of death in the country last year.

When including those who died from COVID-19 “not identified” at the time of death — 31,715 cases — this would total 105,723, making it the second leading cause of death.

Among the 17 regions, Calabarzon had the highest number of deaths due to COVID-19 with 21,165. This was followed by the National Capital Region with 20,924 deaths and Central Luzon with 18,828.

On the other hand, the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao recorded the lowest number of COVID-19 deaths with 162.

In terms of cities and municipalities, Quezon City had the most deaths due to COVID-19 with 4,660, accounting for 22.3% of the total. It was followed by City of Manila (2,976) and Pasig City (2,075).

According to the PSA, figures on COVID-19 deaths were based on the descriptions written on the medical certificate portion of all death certificates received and certified by local health officers of the concerned local government units.

This differs from the figures released by the Department of Health (DoH), which collects data through a surveillance system and only includes confirmed cases.

As of March 28, the DoH data showed there were 59,030 total deaths from COVID-19. Active COVID-19 cases stood at 41,846, while total infections reached 3.68 million. — Abigail Marie P. Yraola

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