For the first time in Alabama’s known history, the state died more than it was born in 2020. This is a tough milestone that highlights the tragic sacrifice of a pandemic.
“Our state literally shrank in 2020,” Dr. Scott Harris, Alabama’s state health officer, said at a press conference on Friday. According to Dr. Harris, the total death toll in the state last year was 64,714 and the number of births was 57,641.
Even between World War I, World War II, and the 1918 influenza pandemic, no such gap was recorded, Dr. Harris said. Returning to the earliest available records, in 1900, “there was no time when the death toll exceeded the number of births,” he said.
Nationally, the birth rate has fallen for the sixth consecutive year in 2020, and some experts say the pandemic may be accelerating that trend. According to a study by the University of New Hampshire, half of the 50 states in the United States had more deaths than 2020, while only five had more deaths than 2019.
According to data from the Alabama Public Health Service, 7,182 deaths were officially attributed to Covid in Alabama last year.
In a city hall discussion with Alabama’s largest digital news site, Al.com, on Wednesday, Dr. Harris dismissed the alleged misrepresentation of Covid’s death.
“We accept skeptics:’Well, they were just older people who were going to die anyway, and you’re just attributed their death to Covid,” he says. “It’s not.”
According to New York Times data, Alabama has recently killed an average of about 60 people a day, and only 41 percent of the state’s eligible population is fully vaccinated.
Alabama’s full vaccination rate is comparable to that of Idaho, making it the third lowest rate in the country. Two lower ranks are in Wyoming and West Virginia.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivy recommended the citizens to be vaccinated with Covid, but like many other Republicans, when President Biden recently announced his vaccination obligations, he was “exorbitant” and “exorbitant.” I called it “too much” and opposed it.