COVID effect? Deaths in Germany up 5 percent in 2020

COVID effect? Deaths in Germany up 5 percent in 2020

In a stark reminder of the significant effect the coronavirus pandemic has had on the German population, new statistics show that 2020 saw almost 5 percent more deaths than the previous year. 

COVID effect? Deaths up 4,9 percent in Germany in 2020

As the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) in Wiesbaden reported, a total of 985.572 people died in Germany last year, 4,9 percent more than in 2019. Coronavirus was given as the main cause of death in 4 percent of all fatalities - a total of 39.758 people. 

However, Destatis believes the effect of the pandemic was more pronounced, since the 4-percent figure does not include cases in which COVID was documented on the death certificate as an underlying condition. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Germany has recorded 96.731 deaths related to coronavirus. 

It seems likely that the virus was responsible for the significant upswing in the number of deaths in the federal republic in 2020, Destatis concludes. 

Cardiovascular disease biggest killer in Germany

Overall, cardiovascular diseases remained the most common cause of death in Germany in 2020, accounting for 34 percent of all fatalities. A total of 338.001 people died from conditions like heart disease, strokes and arterial disease. The second leading cause of death was cancer, with the disease responsible for 23,5 percent of all deaths, or 231.271 people. 

Almost 41.800 of all deaths (4,2 percent) were due to non-natural causes such as injuries or poisoning. 17.211 people died as a result of a fall. 

A total of 9.206 people committed suicide in Germany in 2020. Three quarters were men. This is a slight rise compared to 2019, when 9.041 cases of suicide were recorded, but not as significant as was feared during the longer phases of lockdown restrictions. 



Abi Carter

Managing Editor at IamExpat Media. Abi studied German and History at the University of Manchester and has since lived in Berlin, Hamburg and Utrecht, working since 2017 as a writer,...

Read more



Leave a comment