Excess mortality in 2020 in the working-age population of nine Latin American countries

Benavides et al.


Estimate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, through excess all-cause mortality and potential years of productive life lost (YPLL) in the working-age population, in selected Latin American and Caribbean countries.


Study based on data on deaths from all causes from age 15 to 69 years, mainly from national institutes of statistics. Estimates of expected deaths were based on reported deaths from 2015 to 2019. Excess mortality was estimated using the P indicator, standardized mortality ratio (SMR), and potential YPLL up to age 70 years.


Excess deaths in Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Peru totaled 431 083 (282 558 men and 148 575 women), representing a potential loss of 5 715 770 (3 742 955 in men and 1 972 815 in women) years of productive life. Observed mortality was significantly higher than expected in all countries except the Dominican Republic.


COVID-19 in the working-age population will have a profound impact on socio-economic conditions. Timely counting of excess deaths is useful and can be used as an early warning system to monitor the magnitude of COVID-19 outbreaks. Monitoring of excess mortality in working-age people by the Ibero-American Observatory on Safety and Health at Work enables a more accurate assessment of the social and economic burden of COVID-19.

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