Those were only the deaths confirmed by lab test, which the WHO warned was a gross underestimate because the deaths of people without access to health system go uncounted, and as the virus is not always detectable after a victim dies.
The study, led by Dr Fatimah Dawood of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also shows the pandemic’s impact varied widely by region, with 51% of swine flu deaths occurring in Africa and southeast Asia, which account for only 38% of the world’s population.
“This pandemic really did take an enormous toll,” Stuff.co.nz quoted Dawood as saying. “Results also suggest how best to deploy resources. If a vaccine were to become available, we need to ensure it reached the areas where the death toll is likely to be highest.”