Good Question: How are local COVID deaths reported?

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC)— Here’s a Good Question about some COVID confusion.

Mary wanted to know: Have you’ve noticed the inconsistency in the number of deaths? Every few days you report "new deaths," but it shows dates that overlap.

That’s something we’ve heard a lot about, because it’s true. We may go a couple days without hearing about any new virus victims in Monroe County and the Finger Lakes Region, as many daily updates from the county say no new deaths reported. Then, 24 hours later, when we get the next press release, we may learn of dozens of patients at once who died from the virus, going back multiple weeks.

Just take a look at last Wednesday’s report as an example: 39 covid victims who passed away, but the time frame covers Dec. 3 through Jan. 14, a nearly a month and a half span.

But all deaths were reported at once, and there is an explanation for that,

Monroe County Health Commissioner Dr. Mike Mendoza says they rarely find out about virus deaths as they happen, especially if the patient isn’t in the hospital. He says it can also take weeks for death certificates to get processed.

So that’s why it appears the deaths come in groups. You can always check the county’s dashboard records to see the exact breakdown by date.


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