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Fact Check-Deaths among the vaccinated population are not currently double what they were at Omicron peak

An article published on March 24, 2022, has incorrectly claimed that COVID-19 deaths in the UK among the vaccinated population are double what they were at the peak of the Omicron wave.

“Deaths among the vaccinated population in the past 4 weeks are double the number of deaths recorded among the vaccinated population throughout December at the height of the Omicron wave,” a statement in the article published on website “The Expose” reads (here ).

Government data show cases rose steadily throughout December 2021 and peaked on Jan. 3. They fell steadily following the peak and plateaued through mid-January, before falling again in February. See here .

The article bases its claims on deaths recorded within sixty days of a positive COVID-19 result, as published in the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) COVID-19 vaccine surveillance report (here ) .

It says: “The totals [sic] number of alleged Covid-19 deaths within 60 days of a positive test by vaccination status between 6th Dec 21 and 2nd Jan 22, as confirmed by table 12b of the UKHSA Week 1 2022 report were as follows –

• Not-vaccinated population = 928 deaths

• Partly vaccinated population = 130 deaths

• Triple/Double-vaccinated population = 2,621 deaths.”

The article compares these figures to deaths recorded in a later UKHSA report between Feb. 14 and Mar. 13, 2022 (here ).

These figures show the number of deaths within 60 days of a positive COVID-19 test totalled 401 for the unvaccinated, 123 for the partially vaccinated and 4,560 for the double or triple vaccinated.

The total is therefore not double the December period, but additionally, because the data used recorded deaths within 60 days of a positive COVID-19 test, the later period captured infections recorded at the peak of the Omicron wave.

The Expose could not be reached for comment.

Other data sets published by the UKHSA, which use the measure of deaths within 28 days of a positive test, show deaths among the vaccinated were lower over the February to March period than they were in December.

The number of deaths of double or triple vaccinated people within 28 days of a positive test listed in week 11 of the UKHSA report covering Feb. 14 to March 13, is 2,115 ( here).

For the period of Dec. 6, 2021 and Jan. 2, 2022, the equivalent number was 2,750 (here ).

Any comparison of these figures would need to take into account not only the background rate of infection but also the ages of those affected and the impact of the booster dose rollout to the population, which began in September 2021 and worked down priority and age groups.

VERDICT

False. It is incorrect to claim that recent COVID-19 mortality rates among the vaccinated population are double what they were in December.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .

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