COVID-19 mortality rate 5 times higher with health risk factors

The Yomiuri Shimbun
The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry / The Environment Ministry. In Central Gov’t Bldg. No.5, Chiyoda ward, Tokyo

The COVID-19 mortality rate for patients with pre-existing health issues is five times higher compared to those with no pre-existing conditions, according to data compiled by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry.

The ministry’s findings, which were presented at an advisory body meeting on Wednesday, were based on data from the centralized HER-SYS COVID-19 information-sharing system.

The ministry examined the death rates of about 100,000 patients, who were confirmed infected between April and June, looking at whether or not they have nine aggravating factors, including diabetes, hypertension, cancer, obesity, and smoking.

A total of 320,000 cases were confirmed nationwide during the same period.

The average death rate for those with at least one of the health risk factors was 2.28%, 5.6 times higher compared to those without such factors, at 0.41 %.

The higher the number of risk factors, the higher the death rate: an average of 1.38% for patients with one risk factor, and 9.69% for patients with four or more.

Chronic kidney disease was the health risk factor with the highest mortality rate, at 14%.

The rate for Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) was 10.2%, and 8.35% for cancer.

The data also indicated age was a major factor among patients with health risk factors. The mortality rate was 6.89% for those aged 65 and older, but was less than 1% for those aged 64 and younger.

The Yomiuri Shimbun
An artist illustration : Mortality rates of COVID-19 patients by health risk factor