Ohio Updates Its Reporting of Deaths Caused by COVID-19

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Starting Tuesday, the Ohio Department of Health will rely solely on death certificate data when reporting deaths in the state caused by COVID-19.

On its website, the ODH stated only verified mortality data is listed at Coronavirus.ohio.gov and will only be updated about twice weekly as it is received. The data is gathered using death certificate data from the Electronic Death Registration System as the sole source of information for deaths reported by the ODH, according to a press release Tuesday.

Previously, the ODH had reported data from the Ohio Disease Reporting System and reconciled that information with verified death certificate data from EDRS.

“Early in the pandemic, Ohio recognized the need to be transparent and report data as quickly and accurately as possible. We knew the citizens of Ohio needed to know about the spread of COVID-19 statewide and their communities,” said ODH Director Stephanie McCloud.

The change seeks to address any potential disconnects and inaccuracies in reporting deaths caused by COVID-19 in the state. EDRS is the final source of truth about deaths and will allow the state to report only deaths that have been verified to be caused by COVID-19.

“The Ohio Department of Health is committed to sharing information as quickly as possible – but not at the price of accuracy,” said Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff ODH chief medical officer. “That is why, as we move forward, we will be reporting the ‘gold standard’ of data from EDRS. The mortality data will be more accurate.”

On Tuesday, the ODH reported a total of 16,750 deaths based on the data, revised down from the 17,346 it reported Monday.

The ODH also reported 1,709 new COVID-19 cases in the state on Tuesday, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 970,583. The state’s 21-day reported case average is 2,154. The daily peak for new cases was 11,252 on Dec. 12.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 935,834 total cases on Tuesday, an increase of 2,564 from Monday, as well as 24,100 deaths, up 74.

Hospitalizations in Ohio are at 50,503, up 121 in the past 24 hours. Of the total hospitalizations, 7,160 have been admitted to intensive care, including 12 in the last 24 hours. Currently, there are 1,131 patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in Ohio, including 295 in intensive care and 207 on a ventilator.

In Region 5, which includes Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties, there are 219 patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19, including 48 in the ICU and 22 on a ventilator.

As of March 2, there have been 1,725,712 vaccinations administered in Ohio, or 14.76% of the state’s population. Of those vaccinated, 1,350,923 are White, 97,958 are Black; 36,316 are Asian; 22,389 are Hispanic or Latino; 2,927 are American Indian/Alaska Native; 895 are Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander; and 5,726 are multiracial. There are 230,967 people listed as Unknown or Other that have been vaccinated.

In Mahoning County, the ODH reports 19,470 cases Tuesday, up 26 from Monday, with 918 hospitalizations and 537 deaths. There have been 39,829 vaccine doses administered, or 17.42% of the county’s population.

The ODH reports 14,337 cases in Trumbull County, or 22 new cases, with 1,030 hospitalizations and 413 deaths. There have been 30,600 vaccinations administered in the county, or 15.46% of the total population.

In Columbiana County, the ODH reports 8,120 positive cases as of Tuesday, up 14, along with 464 hospitalizations and 200 deaths. There have been 14,699 vaccinations in the county, or 14.43% of the population.

Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties are rated Red in the state’s color-coded Public Health Advisory System, indicating very high exposure and spread. All 88 counties in the state are at least Orange level, indicating increased exposure and spread. No counties are rated Purple, the highest level of spread.

Of the total cases reported by Ohio Department of Health, 831,329 are confirmed. ODH reported 139,254 probable cases based on the CDC’s expanded case definition. The ODG reported 16,750 deaths of Ohio residents because of COVID-19. Only verified mortality data is listed and the information is updated approximately twice weekly it is received.

The state reports a presumed 914,893 Ohioans have recovered after testing positive. Presumed recovered is defined as cases with a symptom onset date of greater than 21 days prior who are not deceased, according to the ODH website.

As of Tuesday, Ohio had conducted 10,084,4841 tests. CLICK HERE for a map of testing locations in the state. A list of vaccination sites can be found HERE.

In Pennsylvania, 804,852 of the state’s 935,834 cases are confirmed, according to the state’s Department of Health, and 130,982 are probable. There are currently 1,670 patients hospitalized, including 354 in the ICU. There are 190 are on a ventilator.

Of all tests conducted in Pennsylvania, 3,898,167 were reported negative, the department reported Tuesday. With positive cases, 91% have recovered. If a case has not been reported as a death and it is more than 30 days past the date of their first positive test or onset of symptoms, then the person is considered recovered, according to the health department’s website.

The state reports Mercer County has seen 8,072 total cases as of Tuesday, up 22 from the day before, and 240 deaths. Lawrence County has reported 6,056 cases, up 18, and 184 deaths.

According to the commonwealth, 1,720,898 partial vaccines have been administered and 762,733 Pennsylvanians are fully vaccinated. That includes 12,927 partial vaccinations and 8,460 full vaccinations in Mercer County and 7,706 partial and 4,604 full vaccinations in Lawrence County.

The figures are updated daily by the Ohio Department of Health at 2 p.m. and Pennsylvania Department of Health at noon.

For more stories on the coronavirus and its impact on businesses, both locally and nationally, go to our coronavirus news page here.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.