DW: We examine statistics on infection and death rates from the coronavirus in Germany each day. And we get the ones information from countries around the world. To what volume can those numbers be relied on? Are they correct?

they are trying out otherwise, or they may be classifying people who died from coronavirus or the associated symptoms differently.

. So it's not as even though the numbers that we report in Germany aren't proper. It's simply that as quickly as you start to examine the ones numbers to every other united states of america — for example, Italy — it gets very difficult.

may want to you increase on that and deliver us an example of a assessment with every other united states of america?

sure. So, as an example, if you test a exclusive organization of humans for the coronavirus [than in another country], you'll have a extraordinary populace who doubtlessly can take a look at positive for the virus. In Germany, the common age of humans checking out positive is about forty five. In Italy, it's over 60 years of age.

So in Germany, we have a bigger group of folks who are younger who test tremendous. But that also means that the group in Italy is older, and we know that older age is a high-chance factor for loss of life from the coronavirus infection, and the average age of people who die is the equal — barely over eighty in each countries — so one need to not be surprised that whilst you look at the absolute numbers which are recorded, Italy has a larger number compared to Germany.

there's some other component that might not be applicable proper now, but the distinction in the dying costs in distinctive nations, as an example, in Italy and Germany, may be due to certain social systems. We recognise that the aged are higher integrated into social life in Italy in comparison with Germany, and that is mostly a excellent component.

however in this case, you growth the likelihood of having inflamed, and the elderly are those who are more likely to die from this disorder. So which can also provide an explanation for a number of the differences that we're seeing as compared to Germany, in which the aged are perhaps a bit greater isolated than the ones residing in Italy.

And can we realize how many deaths typically arise round this time of yr? Can we understand what a regular variety is in comparison to what we're seeing now?

that could be a superb question and a completely crucial question. And these numbers are simply very lots needed to see if there surely is an increase in normal mortality. Reviews from Italy advise, at least in some regions, that the quantity of individuals who are dying right now and [are] not labeled as coronavirus sufferers is growing as properly. So it's far in all likelihood that for every coronavirus death there's some other person who died because of coronavirus but turned into now not recorded as such.

but it relies upon on the country whether you have got information available on what number of people died ultimate week, for example, so that you can examine that to an average charge of death in that week for the past 5 years, let's say. If there's an growth, you'll then doubtlessly see a sign that some thing became going incorrect.

only some states report to a eu database so that you can see those numbers pretty speedy. And to the excellent of my knowledge, we do now not have that information available in Germany right now.

So there's no longer absolutely a good deal being finished to compare the ones numbers with deaths from Covid-19 because the statistics's not there?

not in Germany. However I'm aware about reports from Italy. They do exactly that. They compare the quantity of individuals who died in a given week — allow's say, last week — to the deaths in that calendar week of a preceding 12 months, or an average of the preceding five years. And there, you can see a clear height.

How likely is it that we will see a large and possibly an unexpected spike in deaths in Germany, or even somewhere else, because not all coronavirus deaths are being recorded as coronavirus deaths?

In Germany, I think we are going to see extra humans die from the coronavirus. And we will recognise sometime inside the future whether or not there's also an increase within the standard mortality, likely additionally because of the coronavirus however no longer recorded at this factor.

Globally, the equal factor could be real, because we're no longer checking out anyone. In addition, we don't take a look at someone who dies [as a non-coronavirus patient] for whether he or she simply had a coronavirus infection. But that would permit us to classify people in another way than we currently do. So, sure, there can be an extra charge of those who die from the coronavirus that we're currently now not reporting and now not seeing.

Professor Tobias Kurth is the director of the Institute of Public health at the Charité university health center in Berlin.