Ohio COVID-19 deaths underreported; 4,000 to be added to total

Coronavirus

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW)– The Ohio Department of Health said as many as 4,000 COVID-19 deaths may have been underreported through the state’s system.

They will be added to the death count in the coming week. As of Wednesday afternoon, the total reported number of COVID-19 deaths in Ohio was 11,856.

“Process issues affecting the reconciliation and reporting of these deaths began in October. The largest number of deaths were from November and December. Although being reported this week, the deaths will reflect the appropriate date of death on the state’s COVID-19 dashboard,” the state health department said in a news release on Wednesday.

The issue was discovered during routine employee training. The Ohio Department of Health is working with the state auditor’s office, which has been involved in the COVID-19 data since September.

“As these deaths are added to the counts, the daily reported death counts will be high for a two to three-day period. After this increase, normal processes will resume, with increased quality assurance related to the death reconciliation process,” ODH said.

On Wednesday, the state health department said 3,281 coronavirus cases, 63 deaths, 227 hospitalizations and 20 intensive care unit admissions were reported in the last 24 hours.

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