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But there are still nearly 14,000 deaths, itself a significant spike, that could be undiagnosed deaths caused directly by the coronavirus or those caused by it indirectly.

That gives a clearer picture of the total cost of the virus.

It can also be a better measure for comparing countries because it doesn’t depend on which deaths get counted.

Making comparisons

But it still “needs to be put into perspective” says Prof Richardson.

The UK releases deaths data every week, but that’s not the case for all countries.

Some publish data daily, some monthly or quarterly, making it difficult to compare from a similar starting point.

The things that make coronavir