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Excess winter deaths

\ ˈɛkˌsɛs \ ˈwɪntər \ dɛθs \

A measure of how many more people in a given population die in the winter months (usually defined as December-March in the Northern Hemisphere) compared to the average for the rest of the year.

In the UK, the Office of National Statistics compare the months of December to March with the preceding August to November and the following April to July.

Cold homes and a greater prevalence of influenza are believed to be the most common causes of excess winter deaths. There can be significant variations in excess winter deaths from year to year driven by factors such as the particular flu strain that is most prevalent, extreme weather or the effectiveness of the flu vaccine that is administered to the high risk population.

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