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What's the Real Story?

Unfortunately, the answer is crystal clear: The Coronavirus Death Toll in the United States is dramatically understated.

A New York Times analysis of estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows just how many lives are being lost in the pandemic, as some people die from the virus itself and others from the upheaval it has brought.

Nationwide, 200,700 more people have died than usual from March 15 to July 25, according to C.D.C. estimates, which adjust current death records to account for typical reporting lags. That number is 54,000 higher than the official count of coronavirus deaths for that period. Higher-than-normal death rates are now widespread across the country; only Alaska, Hawaii, Maine and West Virginia show numbers that look similar to recent years.

Our analysis examines deaths from all causes — not just confirmed cases of coronavirus — beginning in mid-March when the virus took hold. That allows comparisons that don’t depend on the availability of coronavirus tests in a given place or on the accuracy of cause-of-death reporting. 

Best Explanation

Through July 25, estimated excess deaths were about 37 percent higher than the official coronavirus fatality count. If this pattern holds, it would put the current death toll at more than 216,000 people.

Covid is the best explanation for the excess deaths. 

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Arguably hospitals were so flooded with Covid it impacted other ailments and/or fear of catching Covid caused people to not seek treatment for other diseases resulting in excess deaths. 

But what percentage would one want to place on that? 

The Real Number Range

If one assigned all excess deaths to Covid, the number would be 54,000. That's not likely.

I suspect at least 80% of those excess deaths were Covid-related. 

That would make it the undercount at least 43,000 (as of July 25) and higher now.