HHS Will Stop Counting COVID Deaths on Feb. 2, According to New Guidance for Hospitals

Source: PJ Media.

Is this good or bad? I don’t know.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, government-reported Covid-19 death metrics have been controversial for a variety of technical reasons.

The end of hospital data collection for Covid-19 deaths may mean the public will be less well-informed than otherwise. OR, it may mean that irrelevant data is finally being abandoned.

I doubt the latter but think the former wasn’t much help to begin with. What do you think?

11 thoughts on “HHS Will Stop Counting COVID Deaths on Feb. 2, According to New Guidance for Hospitals

    1. I don’t think pointing fingers at “right wing media pearl clutching” is useful or appropriate here. Business Insider and PJ Media both report that the change in data collection will impact Covid-19 death reporting. As Business Insider puts it:

      “Caballero told Insider Americans will still see daily and weekly COVID-19 death counts, but that those counts are delayed and often incomplete, depending on if and how state and local agencies report deaths. He said the HHS hospital data are quicker and more reliable.

      “‘This policy change means that, just as Omicron deaths skyrocket, we’ll be in the dark about it, and we will hinder efforts to quantify how much the death certificate data underestimates the death toll during the current surge and beyond,’ he said.”

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      1. Caballero was a dissenting opinion, but it sounded like thin gruel. He thought “at least” 7 states used hospital data. 7 out of 50? So how can that impact data collection on a national scale. Particularly since the data is still collected and published either way.

        I hold by “pearl clutching”.

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      2. RE: “Particularly since the data is still collected and published either way.”

        Don’t confuse data with events. HHS is ending data collection on deaths reported by hospitals. Other data sources also report on death events. So, no matter how you slice it, the HHS policy change will reduce the totality of data to describe the Covid-19 death counts and rates.

        If you want to hold by “pearl clutching” you’ll need to show us where it is happening.

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        1. CDC still collects data and has been the source for quite some time. Direct reporting to HHS is the issue I think. Didn’t the Trump administration want that additional reporting to HHS? For reasons that escape me.

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        2. RE: “Didn’t the Trump administration want that additional reporting to HHS?”

          I don’t know. How is that even relevant?

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          1. I mentioned it because I don’t think the HHS ever got hospital data directly before the last administration’s regulatory change and there was some controversy about the administration either holding back or altering data. So getting data directly to the HHS may not really be even necessary.

            As far as I can recall, the CDC is the channel for data on disease anyway, and they are part of HHS.

            Liked by 2 people

  1. For perspective on Omicron as it relates to its impact on the ground, this link shines some light on the issue.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/jan/16/no-intention-of-getting-infected-understanding-omicrons-severity?CMP=oth_b-aplnews_d-1

    Apparently, Omicron’s ability to infect lungs is less than Delta or earlier variants. But damage to other organs and “long haul” issues are still part of the COVID playbook. And immunity is not necessarily guaranteed through infection.

    I guess we’ll see in the next months if relaxing our guard is working. But as for the “hospital data” being replaced for other sources, I think it is no more than trying to ease the burden on caregivers and use other sources that are already major in data collection.

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    1. The “hospital data” is not being replaced, it is being eliminated. The reasons for doing so are obscure at present, although it is notable that the elimination may contribute to misinformation.

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  2. It’s good. The phonies running this circus have been lying from the first day They inflated the number of cases, the number of hospitalizations, and the number of deaths.
    Question now is whether the new way will be more accurate? Or more skillful lying.

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