According to a new study published by Mayo Clinic researchers, the COVID-19 pandemic was linked to an increase in the death rate in Minnesota during the first year of the pandemic compared to the two previous years.
Deaths were driven by both COVID-19 and other causes linked with preventable “deaths of despair,” such as overdose, alcohol use, and malnutrition. Researchers identified a 68% increase in assault by firearms, a 49% increase in accidental poisonings, a 48% increase in malnutrition, and a 25% increase in liver disease. COVID-19 caused or contributed to almost 10% of all Minnesota deaths in 2020.
The study’s findings serve as a reminder of the need for continued vigilance in the face of COVID-19 and the importance of supporting communities and populations affected by the pandemic.