Causes of Deaths in the Philippines (Preliminary): January to September 2021

Reference Number: 

2021-521

Release Date: 

Saturday, December 18, 2021

 

Explanatory Note

Data on causes of death presented in this press release were obtained from the deaths registered, either timely or belatedly, at the appropriate Office of the City/Municipal Civil Registrar throughout the country and subsequently submitted for encoding to the Office of the Civil Registrar General through the Provincial Statistical Offices (PSOs) of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). The information presented includes deaths that occurred from January to September 2021 based on data files received by the PSA - Civil Registration Service (CRS) from the PSOs as of 29 October 2021. Thus, the figures presented herein are still preliminary and may differ at the final count. Deaths of Filipinos abroad are not yet included in this release, but Filipinos whose usual residence is abroad and foreign nationals with deaths occurring in the country during the reference period were included in this report.

Figures in this release, specifically for deaths due to Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), may differ from the one released by the Department of Health (DOH) because the figures in this release were obtained from the certificates of death particularly the descriptions written on the medical certificate portion therein as reviewed by the health officer of the local government unit concerned. On the other hand, the figures released by the DOH were obtained through a surveillance system.

Furthermore, figures in this release for deaths due to COVID-19 refer to both confirmed and probable cases as of registration. The coding of causes of death is based on the World Health Organization’s (WHO) International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems revision 10 (ICD-10). With the emergence of COVID-19, the WHO issued two new emergency codes (Code U07.1 and Code U07.2) to be used when coding causes of death for statistical purposes.

Code U07.1 or COVID-19-virus identified is used when COVID-19 is confirmed by a laboratory test. Code U07.2 or COVID-19-virus not identified is used for suspected or probable cases as well as clinically-epidemiologically diagnosed COVID-19 cases where testing was not completed or inconclusive.1 Thus, the figures in this release for deaths due to COVID-19 include both Code U07.1 and Code U07.2 while the figures released by the DOH, on the other hand, include deaths from confirmed cases only or Code U07.1.

1https://www.who.int/classifications/icd/COVID-19-coding-icd10.pdf

 

Ischaemic heart diseases, cerebrovascular diseases, and neoplasms lead the causes of death in the Philippines

The top three causes of death in the country from January to September of 2021 were ischaemic heart diseases, cerebrovascular diseases, and neoplasms. Incidentally, these were also the leading causes of death in the same period in 2020 with some deviations in the ranking. During the first nine months of 2021, ischaemic heart diseases were the leading cause of death with 91,152 cases or 18.5 percent of the total deaths in the country. This indicated an increase of about 18.7 percent from the 76,783 deaths or 16.9 percent of the total deaths in the same period of 2020. On the other hand, cerebrovascular diseases, now came in second with 49,063 deaths (9.9% share) from being third in the previous year’s ranking. It showed an increase of 3.6 percent from the 47,355 cases (10.4% share) in the same period in 2020. Neoplasms, commonly known as “cancer” were the third leading cause which accounted for 42,633 deaths (8.6% share) of the total. Deaths due to COVID-19 virus identified ranked as the fourth leading cause of death with 34,361 recorded cases (7.0% share) from January to September 2021 from 6,042 cases (1.3% share) in the same period in 2020. Meanwhile, deaths due to diabetes mellitus (32,057 or 6.5% share), which ranked fifth in 2021, had an increase of 9.7 percent. (Table 1 and Figure 1)

 

Figure 1.  All Causes of Mortality (Top 20), Philippines:
January to June, 2020(p) & 2021(p)

 

Deaths due to some specified respiratory diseases decrease from the previous year

Based on the 20 leading causes of death, registered deaths attributed to pneumonia recorded a substantial decline, from 27,426 (6.0% share) in January to September 2020 to 22,158 (4.5% share) in the same period in 2021. This indicated a decrease of -19.2 percent, pushing its rank from 5th to 7th. Similarly, deaths due to respiratory tuberculosis decreased by -19.1 percent during the same period in 2021 (from 14,353 in 2020 to 11,610 in 2021), moving down its rank from 10th to 12th. Meanwhile, deaths due to chronic lower respiratory diseases showed a decrease of -4.4 percent during the same period (from 15,716 in 2020 to 15,018 in 2021), lowering its rank to number 10 from number 8. (Table 1 and Figure 1)

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) ranks among the leading causes of death

Registered deaths due to COVID-19 accounted for a total of 50,758 deaths or 10.3 percent of the total registered deaths from January to September 2021. By classification, COVID-19 with virus identified and COVID-19 virus not identified were both included in the 10 leading causes of death. COVID-19 with virus identified was the 4th leading cause of death in the country with 34,361 cases or 7.0 percent of the total deaths in the same period in 2021. Meanwhile, registered deaths due to COVID-19 with virus not identified accounted for 16,397 or 3.3 percent of the total deaths from January to September 2021, making it the 8th leading cause of death. (Table 1 and Figure 1)

 

Figure 2.  Number of Registered Deaths Due to COVID-19 by Region of Usual Place of Residence, Philippines:
January to September 2021(p)
(as of 29 October 2021)

(p) - Preliminary

Ten regions report over a thousand COVID-19 deaths

Among the 17 regions, the National Capital Region (NCR) registered the highest number of deaths due to COVID-19 with 14,218 or 28.0 percent of the total COVID-19 deaths from January to September 2021. CALABARZON ranked second with 10,386 deaths (20.5%), Central Luzon came in third with 9,001 deaths (17.7%), while Western Visayas was ranked fourth with 2,753 deaths (5.4%). On the other hand, ARMM reported the least number of registered COVID-19 deaths with only 68 cases. (Table 2 and Figure 2)

Quezon City registers most COVID-19 deaths in NCR

In NCR, Quezon City reported the highest number of deaths due to COVID-19, with 3,013 deaths or 21.2 percent of the total COVID-19 deaths in the region from January to September 2021. This was followed by the City of Manila and City of Pasig with 2,214 (15.6%) and 1,439 (10.1%) COVID-19 deaths, respectively. (Table 3 and Figure 3)

 

Figure 3. COVID-19 Deaths in NCR, January to September 2021(p)
(as of 29 October 2021)

(p) - Preliminary

 

DENNIS S. MAPA, Ph.D.
Undersecretary
National Statistician and Civil Registrar General

 

 

Table 1.  Number of Registered Deaths, Percent Shares, and Ranks
by Cause of Death (Top 50), Philippines: January to September, 2020(p) and 2021(p)
(as of 29 October 2021)

 

Table 2.  Number of Registered Deaths Due to COVID-19 by Region
of Usual Place of Residence: January to September 2021(p)
(as of 29 October 2021)

 

Table 3.  Number of Registered Deaths Due to COVID-19 in NCR
by City/Municipality of Usual Place of Residence: January to September 2021(p)
(as of 29 October 2021)

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