Study: US COVID Deaths Likely 16% Higher Than Official Records

    Study: US COVID Deaths Likely 16% Higher Than Official Records
    Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • A new study has found that far more COVID-era excess deaths in the US could be attributed to the infection, which would mean the number of COVID deaths was at least 16% higher nationally than the official tally.

    • The study, published in the American journal PNAS, observed 1,194,610 excess natural-cause deaths between March 2020 and Aug. 2022, of which 162,886 were not attributed to COVID.


    The Spin

    Narrative A

    This data finally shows the reason behind the mysterious uptick in excess deaths during the pandemic — which turns out not to be that mysterious at all. From government officials down to their constituents, many Americans declined to or were encouraged not to count family deaths due to political reasons. Instead, they pointed to things like drug overdoses as the reason for rising excess fatalities. In reality, public health bodies were insufficient in their counting and thus trivialized the dangers of COVID's lethality.

    Narrative B

    The nation's experts who claimed COVID deaths were skyrocketing for three years eventually backtracked, admitting that they were overcounting by 70%. Even the strongest proponents of the original COVID excess death theory, including national public health officials and reporters, have now admitted that those who died "with" COVID were lumped in with those who died "from" it. This context is essential.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 5% chance that a new SARS-CoV-2 variant classified as a VOC (Variant of Concern) or worse will result in at least 20,000 daily incident COVID hospitalizations in the United States before July 1, 2025, according to Metaculus community prediction.


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