With the slew of data points and opinions on the COVID-19 pandemic, how can governments, businesses and the public cut through the noise to make
informed decisions in a post-COVID-19 world? Developed by PEMANDU Associates in collaboration with Malaysia’s Ministry of Science, Technology and
Innovation (MOSTI) and with inputs and qualified endorsement by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Global COVID-19 Index (GCI) is designed to
pull and analyse data from verified sources for 180 WHO Member States into a single source on a daily basis. This makes it a truly comprehensive index
on the pandemic available.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) would like to accord its gratitude to the Government of Malaysia and PEMANDU Associates
for its independent efforts at developing a daily-updated Global COVID-19 Index (GCI) that tracks the severity and recovery of different member states from
the COVID-19 pandemic. We have seen its potential in helping identify best practices amongst member states, with clear evidence in the form of the 118-page
Global Pathfinder Health Best Practices report that they have produced together with Delivery Associates. We believe the tool will be powerful at helping to
identify potential member states at risk and further best practices, particularly for those facing second or third waves of the pandemic. It is for that
reason that we have provided our technical insights to help improve the underlying methodology further. Input from the WHO technical team have been
incorporated into the GCI, so that it becomes a powerful tool to help in the global fight against COVID-19.
However, given the GCI functions on a ranking system, we at WHO would not recommend looking at the absolute rankings as it
creates potential sensitivities amongst member states. We would instead encourage that users use the GCI for its altruistic intent, which are to identify
clusters of member states that have best practices to glean from.
We keenly look forward to any future enhancements that the Government of Malaysia and PEMANDU Associates have committed to
put into the GCI moving forward.
The GCI is driven fully by big data, and the index scores 180 countries / WHO Member States on how well they are coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The intent of the GCI Index is to enable countries to compare their relative performance against other countries which then enables the identification of appropriate best practices from the successful nations. In order to develop a relative score, the GCI utilises the min-max method. This statistical method assigns a score between 0-100 that considers the data point’s relationship to the rest of the sample size. We have also built in checks to identify and manage outliers that may skew the sample set.
The Global COVID-19 Index (GCI)’s Severity and Recovery Indexes have a weightage of 70% that is dynamic and changing daily.
The WHO Validated Methodology applies 30% scoring driven by semi-dynamic information that is based on WHO’s Triple Billions Indices (covering Universal Health Coverage, Health Emergencies Protection and Healthier Populations) and sub-components from the European Commission’s (EU) Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre (DRMKC) INFORM Risk Index.
Meanwhile, the Legacy GCI Methodology’s 30% component score is driven by static information currently derived from specific categories of the Global Health Security Index.
The GCI Recovery Index is designed to evaluate the main recovery parameters that are being reported daily to give a clear indication of how a country is performing on its path to recovery in relative comparison to other countries.
WHO Validated Methodology:
The following key dynamic parameters over the past 90 days contributes 70% of the Recovery Index:
The remaining 30% consist of semi-dynamic components derived from the WHO’s Triple Billions Indices and specific sub-components from the European Commission’s (EU) Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre (DRMKC) INFORM Risk Index. These Indices are updated at least once on an annual basis.
The seven semi-dynamic parameters used are:
The following key dynamic parameters since the start of the pandemic in January 2020 contributes 70% of the Recovery Index:
The remaining 30% consist of static scores derived from the Global Health Security Index (GHS), an initiative led by the Johns Hopkins University that was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The GHS was developed to assess a country’s readiness to cope and handle any epidemic.
The reason for the GHS score inclusion is to ensure that there is a way to compare the relative performance of two countries that may be experiencing identical case numbers, but actually have different inherent capabilities to handle the epidemic.
The three parameters used are the:
The GCI Severity Index is designed to exhibit the most recent ‘scarring’ characteristics so that countries that have been affected badly from a health perspective by COVID-19 can be compared with countries that have been similarly affected, and yet have been able to recover.
The data used by the WHO Validated Methodology utilises the most recent 90-days data to more accurately reflect the changing circumstances the individual Member States are facing.
The following key dynamic parameters contributes 70% of the Severity Index:
The remaining 30% consist of semi-dynamic components derived from the WHO’s Triple Billions Indices and specific sub-components from the European Commission’s (EU) Disaster Risk Management Knowledge Centre (DRMKC) INFORM Risk Index. These Indices are updated at least once on an annual basis. The inverse score of the components calculated by the GCI Recovery Index (refer above) is utilized in the WHO Validated Methodology.
The GCI Severity Index of the Legacy Methodology is designed to exhibit ‘scarring’ characteristics so that countries that have been affected badly from a health perspective by COVID-19 can be compared with countries that have been similarly affected, and yet have been able to recover.
As such, the Legacy Methodology applies data from the start of the pandemic since January 2020 instead of limiting to the latest 90-days applied in the WHO Validated Methodology.
The two static parameters used are:
The GCI Microsite has 3 main sections:
Get a global perspective of the COVID-19 status, through visual interactive maps showing 184 countries’ progress towards recovery. The GCI Global Dashboard also shows the full list of all 184 countries Severity and Recovery rating scores.
What the Global Dashboard covers:
Get a selectable view for 184 countries on their individual Recovery and Severity Indexes / Ratings. The GCI Country Dashboard gives you a more in-depth look at the latest Active Case curve, daily confirmed cases, daily recoveries and daily deaths, and stringency scores for each country.
A daily update of key data points that are not commonly considered – all towards a more instructive view of the COVID-19 scenario.
In addition, the GCI also gives you country matching functionality, allowing individual countries to identify other countries around the world sharing similar characteristics such as population, average population density, income levels and general climate.
What it is
How it works
The GCI Recovery index factors information on recovery rates, active cases per population, and the amount of standardised and consistent testing
the individual countries currently conduct. It also takes into consideration countries’ previously evaluated ability to detect, respond and treat
those that have been infected with any epidemic based on the publicly available Global Health Security Index published in October 2019.
The dynamic data used by the GCI is updated daily based on recoveries and test information for each country.
How it can be used
Countries with a higher recovery rating have made significant strides in being able to consider relaxation of restrictions. This is of particular
interest once neighbouring regions achieve similar levels of recovery and becomes indicative of when it may be possible to relax border restrictions
in a very targeted manner.
It also enables countries to actively seek out best practices from those performing better in their recoveries.
The GCI Severity Index factors information on proportionate death rates due to COVID-19 and confirmed cases as a
factor of the country’s population. It also utilises data from the publicly available Global Health Security Index published in October 2019 to
score for the categories of detection and public health system vulnerabilities.
The GCI Severity Index looks into daily confirmed cases and deaths, but also factors in data on national mortality rates to paint a proper picture
of how badly affected the country has been from a health perspective.
The visualisation allows countries to compare themselves against others which have suffered similar levels of severity
(y-axis – the higher the more severe), and are able to recover (x-axis – the further left the more recovered).
It also enables countries to see if they are making progress on a daily basis towards positive recovery.
The top 20 GCI Recovery Index countries are listed here daily.
This table contains data which has been analysed by the GCI following consultations with recognised academics, medical professionals and epidemiologists
that have provided constructive feedback into the GCI. The data shown in this table are part of the dynamic parameters updated daily and used in
generating the GCI Severity and Recovery scores.
This table is generated by a GCI-developed tool to match countries based on their similar characteristics such as population, population density,
income and climate.
Reviewed and Endorsed by:
In Collaboration andPartnership with: