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Covid Victims Had The Worst Chance of Survival in Szabolcs-Szatmár County

Márton Jász 2021.02.28.

In Hungary, the official coronavirus website has no data at all on how the number of deaths has changed county by county. However, it is worth analyzing how it alters, because there are two in particular in which surplus deaths jumped out more significantly than the others at the end of last year.

On the website of the Central Statistical Office, we can find data on how the total mortality in Hungary developed on a quarterly basis by county. Although these statistics do not indicate the cause of death, they do provide an opportunity to find out how many more people died in the counties than a year earlier. According to 444’s analysis, the last quarter of 2020 is compared with the same period from 2019, because last year the number of coronavirus victims nationwide rose significantly in November.

Comparison of data for the fourth quarters of 2019 and 2020. Data from Central Statistical Office.

There were two counties specifically in which the surplus deaths jumped out more: in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg and Nógrád. In Szabolcs, 69 percent more people died in the last three months of 2020 than in 2019. However, in terms of population, Szabolcs was far from being the most infected county. In other words, the chances of survival of those infected were the worst in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg.

If we look at the number of registered infections in proportion to the population, Nógrád had the highest number of confirmed new coronavirus patients in the fourth quarter of 2020. Moreover, Nográd was the second behind Szabolcs in terms of the largest growth in victims compared to last year with a change of 61 percent.

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Although Nógrád has the lowest GDP per capita, the virus has also devastated the counties with stronger economies: in Győr-Moson-Sopron and Komárom-Esztergom, surplus mortality was far above average.

At the very end of the surplus mortality list is Budapest. In spring, the capital had the most victims in proportion to the population, however this changed in autumn. Between October and December, the rate of new coronavirus infections in the capital was already below average. But also far fewer of them died than the average, meaning that those infected had the best chance of surviving the disease in Budapest.

Featured image by Zoltán Balogh/MTI