News from the front: Estimation of excess mortality and life expectancy in the major epicenters of the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy

Ghislandi S, Muttarak R ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0627-4451, Sauerberg M, & Scotti B (2020). News from the front: Estimation of excess mortality and life expectancy in the major epicenters of the COVID-19 pandemic in Italy. medRxiv DOI:10.1101/2020.04.29.20084335. (Submitted)

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Abstract

Existing studies commonly rely on national official reports to estimate the impact of COVID-19 on human life. This is problematic because classification, estimation and reporting of COVID-19 mortality are not consistent across countries. To overcome these problems, this study exploits all cause daily death registrations data provided by the Italian Statistical Office (ISTAT) from January 1 to April 15, 2020. This allows us to: 1) calculate excess mortality in 2020 compared to the average of the years 2015 to 2019; and 2) estimate life expectancy on a seasonal and annual basis. Focusing on the five most severely hit provinces in Italy (Bergamo, Brescia, Cremona, Lodi and Piacenza) and Lombardy region, this analysis captures the impact of COVID-19 on mortality and life expectancy, which are likely to be underestimated when only national level data are considered. We find that seasonal life expectancy in 2020 in the five provinces reduced by 5.1 to 7.8 and 3.2 to 5.8 years for men and women, respectively. For annual life expectancy for the year 2020, in a scenario with no harvesting effect i.e. mortality rates resume to an average level of the years 2015-2019 after the end of the first epidemic wave, the years of life lost is equivalent to 2 to 3.5 years for men and 1.1. to 2.5 years for women in the five provinces. This represents the largest decline in life expectancy after the 1918 influenza pandemic and the Second World War.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: COVID-19
Research Programs: World Population (POP)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 14 May 2020 11:02
Last Modified: 14 May 2020 11:21
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/16470

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