New preliminary figures from national statistics agency CBS suggest that over 20,000 people may have died of coronavirus last year, well above the official figure.
December’s total of 3,904 takes the yearly figure to 20,030, of whom 17,357 are confirmed coronavirus deaths and the rest suspected, the CBS said on Wednesday.
Six in 10 of those who died were in some form of residential care.
The official number of coronavirus deaths reported to the public health institute RIVM last year was some 11,500. This figure only includes people who actually tested positive for the virus and so does not include thousands of undiagnosed cases from early on in the pandemic.
The CBS will publish a more detailed analysis in June.
Reuters said on Tuesday that the global coronavirus death toll had passed three million with Brazil currently accounting for one in four deaths.
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