Burden of COVID-19: Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) across 16 European countries

M. M. Gianino, Maria Michela Gianino, A. Savatteri, G. Politano, Mario Cesare Nurchis, Domenico Pascucci, Gianfranco Damiani

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study is to measure and compare the burden of disease of COVID-19 pandemic in 16 EU/EEA countries through the estimation of Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) over a long period of time. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The observational study was based on data from ECDC and WHO databases collected from 27 January 2020 to 15 November 2020. In addition to the absolute number of DALYs, a weekly trend of DALYs/100,000 inhabitants was computed for each country to assess the evolution of the pandemic burden over time. A cluster analysis and Kolmogorov-Smirnov (KS) test were performed to allow for a country-to-country comparison. RESULTS: The total DALYs amount to 4,354 per 100.000 inhabitants. YLLs were accountable for 98% of total DALYs. Italy, Czechia and Sweden had the highest values of DALYs/100,000 while Finland, Estonia and Slovakia had the lowest. The latter three countries differed significantly from the others – in terms of DALYs trend over time – as shown by KS test. The cluster analysis allowed for the identification of three clusters of countries sharing similar trends of DALYs during the assessed period of time. These results show that notable differences were observed among different countries, with most of the disease burden attributable to YLLs. CONCLUSIONS: DALYs have proven to be an effective measure of the burden of disease. Public health and policy actions, as well as demographic, epidemiological and cultural features of each country may be responsible for the wide variations in the health impact that were observed among the countries analyzed.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)5529-5541
Numero di pagine13
RivistaEuropean Review for Medical and Pharmacological Sciences
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2021


  • COVID-19
  • Cost of Illness
  • Disability-adjusted life years
  • Disabled Persons
  • Europe
  • Health policy
  • Humans
  • Quality-Adjusted Life Years
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Years lost due to disability
  • Years of life lost


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