The Ministry of Health (MOH) has released information on death rates in Singapore to debunk speculation that there have been deaths linked to immunisation, given that the number of deaths have not increased in recent times following the mass vaccination of the population here against Covid-19, CNA reported.
Debunking rumours of increase in deaths due to Covid-19 vaccine
Singapore has all along tracked the number and causes of all deaths throughout the year over time, MOH told CNA.
Age-standardised death rates -- defined as the number of deaths in a given age group, per 1,000 population in the same age group -- have remained stable over the past five years, MOH said.
Month-to-month fluctuations in the number of deaths is expected as MOH said deviations have been observed over the years.
Deaths in 2021 so far
Death statistics, provided by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA), showed 11,391 deaths from January to June 2021.
A rough breakdown is as follows:
January 2021: 1,868 deaths
February 2021: 1,763 deaths
March, April, May and June 2021: 1,900 and more deaths per month
Deaths in 2020
Between January to June 2020, there were 11,292 deaths.
Deaths in 2019
Between January and June 2019, there we 10,582 deaths.
Spikes above 1,900 deaths a month common
However, registering more than 1,900 deaths per month should not be alarming.
MOH said “similar spikes” above 1,900 deaths a month were observed in 2017, with 1,902 deaths in May and 1,925 deaths in June that year.
Total number of deaths will go up due to ageing population
MOH added that the total number of deaths will continue to inch upwards over the years "as our population is also ageing", but "the age-standardised death rates have remained stable over the last five years" after removing the ageing effect.
This means that the number of deaths in a given age group, per 1,000 population in the same age group, has remained stable once deaths associated with ageing have been removed.
On the contrary, age-standardised death rate has gone down, MOH said: "In fact, there was a slight decrease in 2020 and 2021, the years where we were hit by Covid-19."
Rumours of Covid-19-linked deaths spread online
Rumours and speculation over Covid-19 vaccination-linked deaths have been spread online.
One person, Iris Koh, has taken to Facebook to claim to know of people who died after taking the Covid-19 vaccine and demanded the authorities "explain" the "sudden spike in death numbers", pointing to numbers put together by "someone from hardware zone" forum.
MOH had already said on Sep. 4 it was not in the interest of MOH or the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) to hide adverse events arising from Covid-19 vaccinations.
MOH said if a death occurs, it will defer to the coroner, who adjudicates and determines what the cause of death is through post-mortem findings.
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Top photo via MOH