Mild winter leads to lower mortality rate

Fewer people died in this milder than usual winter, according to Statistics Netherlands. Between the first week of December 2015 and the second week of February 2016, a total of 32.5 thousand people died in the Netherlands. That is 2.5 thousand fewer deaths than in the same period 2015/2015.

There were also fewer deaths among the elderly than in the previous winter season. The number of deaths among people over the age of 80 is at this stage 13 percent lower than a year earlier. Among the people aged between 65 and 80 years, the number of deaths is 5 percent lower. Among under 65 year olds, the number of deaths is about the same as during the previous winter.

During the previous winter there was a 21 week flu epidemic, the longest epidemic since the RIVM started keeping record in 1970. Though the current flu epidemic is about as intense as last year's. According to Statistics Netherlands, flu epidemics usually coincide with more deaths, whether or not the epidemic is combined with cold temperatures.