CDC tells Hospitals to increase Covid death stats
... even if you're just assuming or it only contributed
The problem with making informed decisions about coronavirus is that we don’t have a whole lot of data on it at the moment.
The data that we do have, meanwhile, could end up being terminally skewed, particularly the data that’s been coming out of China.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance on determining COVID-19 as a cause of death isn’t going to help those numbers.
Issued March 24, the guidance tells hospitals to list COVID-19 as a cause of death regardless of whether or not there’s actual testing to confirm that’s the case.
Instead, even if the coronavirus was just a contributing factor or if it’s “assumed to have caused or contributed to death,” it can be listed as the primary cause.
The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, or ICD, has established the code U07.1 for death by coronavirus infection. There’s a secondary code, U07.2, “for clinical or epidemiological diagnosis of COVID-19 where a laboratory confirmation is inconclusive or not available,” according to the CDC guidance.
“Because laboratory test results are not typically reported on death certificates in the U.S., NCHS is not planning to implement U07.2 for mortality statistics.”
Therein lies the problem.
“The underlying cause depends upon what and where conditions are reported on the death certificate. However, the rules for coding and selection of the underlying cause of death are expected to result in COVID- 19 being the underlying cause more often than not,” the guidelines read.
Is this new CDC guidance problematic?
“COVID-19 should be reported on the death certificate for all decedents where the disease caused or is assumed to have caused or contributed to death. Certifiers should include as much detail as possible based on their knowledge of the case, medical records, laboratory testing, etc.,” the guidance continued.
“If the decedent had other chronic conditions such as COPD or asthma that may have also contributed, these conditions can be reported in Part II.”
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