Alameda County in Northern California, where Oakland is located, has decided to revise its data methodology for COVID-19. This resulted in a 25% decrease in the COVID-19 death toll the California county reported.
The death toll for COVID-19 in Alameda County went down from 1,634 to 1223 on Friday. This came after officials updated the way they do COVID-19 reporting. They now only include people who directly succumbed to the said disease in their count.
Back then, county officials included any resident in their death toll who died while infected by the virus, not just people who died directly from it.
Now, the Los Angeles Times includes a note on its data for Alameda Country. It mentioned that the county reduced it’s total death county by 411 when it updated its reporting methodology.
A spokesperson for the Alameda County Public Health Department, Neetu Balram, mentioned that the 411 people it excluded from the death toll died due to causes “clearly not caused” by COVID-19.
Balram also rolled out a press release, saying the said county’s definition of a COVID-19 death lagged behind what the state’s official definition is. According to him, this explains the sudden change.
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The total death toll in California records that more than 67,000 people have succumbed to COVID-19.