The Ministry of Health (MOH) has revised the number of deaths due to COVID-19 in 2021 from 803 to 821. The adjustment follows an annual reconciliation exercise after the Registry of Births and Deaths finalised its report for 2021.
2. Doctors are required to notify MOH of COVID-19 deaths as soon as possible. Based on the doctors’ submissions, MOH publishes the number of COVID-19 deaths on our website every day. Under the Registration of Births and Deaths Act 2021, doctors are also required to report information on the cause of death to the Registry of Births and Deaths. The Report on Registration of Births and Deaths for the preceding year is finalised and publicised every June.
3. Overall, a total of 18 deaths will be added to MOH’s official COVID-19 death count for 2021 following the reconciliation exercise, representing a 2.2% increase from the previous count. There is no difference in the number of COVID-19 deaths for 2020.
4. The following are the adjustments to the recorded number of deaths following the reconciliation exercise between MOH records and the Registry’s Report:
a) Eight deaths had not been reported to MOH but were reported to the Registry. MOH will remind doctors to report all COVID-19 deaths to the Ministry.
b) 11 deaths had been reported to MOH, but COVID-19 infection was not indicated as the underlying cause of death in the notifications to MOH, as doctors report the cause of death based on available medical information at the point of reporting. These deaths were subsequently reported to the Registry with COVID-19 infection as the cause of death after further review by the doctors.
c) One death was in the MOH COVID-19 count for 2021, and in the Registry’s count for 2022. This was due to differences in the date of reporting to MOH and the Registry because the death occurred on 31 December 2021. MOH will include the case in the 2022 count instead of the 2021 count
5. Five deaths from the Report on Registration of Births and Deaths were persons diagnosed with COVID-19 while overseas, and who had died after returning to Singapore. These deaths will not be included as MOH’s count only includes deaths from COVID-19 diagnosed in Singapore.
6. We expect to make annual adjustments to the COVID-19 death count in July, following the publication of the Report on Registration of Births and Deaths.
MINISTRY OF HEALTH
1 AUGUST 2022