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 provisional deaths that occurred from January to April 2022 based on data files received by the PSA - Civil Registration Service (CRS) from the PSOs as of 31 May 2022. Thus, the figures presented herein are still preliminary and may differ from 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.
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 April of 2022 were ischaemic heart diseases, cerebrovascular diseases, and neoplasms. Incidentally, these were also the leading causes of death in the same period in 2021. From January to April of 2022, ischaemic heart diseases were the leading cause of death with 29,442 cases or 18.7 percent of the total deaths in the country. On the other hand, cerebrovascular diseases, came in second with 16,316 deaths (10.4% share). Neoplasms, commonly known as “cancer” were the third leading causes which accounted for 14,928 recorded cases (9.5% share) from January to April 2022. Deaths due to diabetes mellitus recorded 10,072 cases or 6.4 percent share, making it the fourth leading cause of death, while deaths due to hypertensive diseases, which ranked fifth recorded 9,068 cases or 5.8 percent share. (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 10,226 deaths or 6.5 percent of the total registered deaths from January to April 2022. By classification, COVID-19 with virus identified and COVID-19 virus not identified were both included in the 15 leading causes of death. COVID-19 with virus identified was the 6th leading cause of death in the country with 7,692 cases or 4.9 percent of the total deaths. Meanwhile, registered deaths due to COVID-19 with virus not identified accounted for 2,534 or 1.6 percent of the total deaths, making it the 14th leading cause of death. (Table 1 and Figure 1)
Three regions report more than a thousand COVID-19 deaths
Among the 17 regions, National Capital Region (NCR) registered the highest number of deaths due to COVID-19 with 2,440 or 23.9 percent of the total COVID-19 deaths from January to April 2022. Region IV-A (CALABARZON) ranked second with 1,521 deaths (14.9%), while Central Luzon came in third with 1,355 deaths (13.3%). On the other hand, BARMM reported the least number of registered COVID-19 deaths with only 20 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 526 deaths or 21.6 percent of the total COVID-19 deaths in the region from January to April 2022. This was followed by the City of Manila and City of Caloocan with 396 (16.2%) and 242 (9.9%) COVID-19 deaths, respectively. (Table 3 and Figure 3)
DENNIS S. MAPA, Ph.D.
National Statistician and Civil Registrar General