r/dataisbeautiful OC: 121 Sep 19 '21 Silver 2 Helpful 5 Wholesome 5 Hugz 4

[OC] COVID-19 was the cause of 1 out of every 9.7 deaths in the US in 2020 (Infographic) OC

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24.7k Upvotes

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u/Traveling101 Sep 19 '21

What the heck happened in 2017?

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u/DJOMaul Sep 19 '21

Doing some googling,

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/apr/12/us-death-rate-mortality-europe

Looks like it might have been peak of the opioid crisis. Very interesting.

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u/Drict Sep 19 '21

There was also a stronger than normal flu, if I recall reading something somewhere about it. Might have been a few years prior to the history of what is presented in this info graphic?

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u/_edaxsE_ Sep 20 '21

Hmm, really? I got suuuper sick and hospitalized from the flu, and I think it may have been in 2017, or late late (almost past) flu season in early 2018. I always thought it was just cause I have bad asthma, but I've never had such a problem with the flu before that

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u/puseeuver6969 Sep 20 '21

Jeez, I don't know how I forgot baout that. My county had temporary ice chests set up to keep OD death bodies cool until they could be taken care of at one point.

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u/freebirdls Sep 20 '21

What state?

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u/SpaceD0rit0 Sep 20 '21

My guess is east coast. West coast is too busy with weeeeeeeed

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u/Ruraraid Sep 20 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

I wouldn't be surprised if it was Ohio since that state was practically ground zero for Opiod use. I remember going there to do some family business related stuff and talked to the sherriff who we knew and he talked about the only things he ever really deals with is the opiod crisis where it was nothing but drug busts and ODs. To him if they get anything other than that its basically a good day for them because the opiod stuff is so depressing to constantly deal with.

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u/PrestigiousAd3900 Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

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u/curvysquares OC: 1 Sep 19 '21

I knew that was a bad year to quit my killing spree

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u/CaseyG Sep 20 '21

166 is indeed less than 2,000.

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u/histo320 Sep 19 '21

The flu in 2016-2017 was pretty bad.

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u/andrewbounds164 Sep 19 '21

That's when I got the flu for the first time, now I have had it almost every year and since 2019 I have had minor lasting side effects. I am going to start to get my flu shot and hope it helps.

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u/way2manychickens Sep 19 '21

If the use the mRna like for covid vaccine, it should be more accurate for the current flu strain. As of now, it's usually 6 months behind the current strain.

I was convinced in 2017/18 to now do flu shot every year (even if not fully accurate) after I (immunocompromised and was flu vaccinated) and my friend (healthy immune system, not vaccinated) both got the same exposure to a person with the flu. I had a couple rough days, but totally functional, and she got her asked kicked for about a full week from it.

Anecdotal, perhaps. But enough for me to justify the flu vaccine even though I get achy for a few days afterwards from it.

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u/Benedrylboof Sep 19 '21

The military made me get one since I joined the military in 2009, then when I got out in 2017 I think I just was like

“I mean….. I didn’t have the flu the last 8 years…. May as well keep getting it.”

Still haven’t had it since, I fucking paid for it last year when I didn’t have insurance because I didn’t want to get covid and the flu at the same time lol

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u/Cyrillus00 Sep 20 '21

I’ve only gotten the flu once in the last 2 decades. I’ve gotten my flu shot every year. The one time I did get it was 2017. I was down for two days with what felt like a really bad cold and mild fever. Someone else I knew from work was out a week with it, found out they never got the shot. Ever.

Still getting the flu shot every year. Totally worth it.

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u/DarthDannyBoy Sep 19 '21

Yep the vaccine may not stop you from getting the illness but it prepares you for it and on average it makes the symptoms far more mild.

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u/Tubthumper5 Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

Really want to know what would constitute “unintentional injuries”.

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u/LiquidDreamtime Sep 19 '21

Likely any car accident, work related accident, or medical accident.

Everything except suicide and underlying health conditions.

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u/Beardamus Sep 19 '21

Suicide is included, at least last time I saw data like this.

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u/Lusakas Sep 19 '21

Is being murdered included in that? Like, wrote it in jest initially, but thinking about it it could very well be concidered getting an unintentional injury as well.

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u/LiquidDreamtime Sep 19 '21

I think murder is intentional, but I believe it is also statistically irrelevant for a data set like this.

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u/ColoradoNudist Sep 19 '21

I think unintentional means no one intended it. In the case of murder, the victim didn't intend it, but the perpetrator did.

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u/MyName_DoesNotMatter Sep 19 '21

No, but manslaughter, yea. Drunk driving and intent to harm without intent to kill like a crime of passion probably.

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u/newbies13 Sep 19 '21

If you're being murdered the cause of death is homicide, and it's tracked, just not killing anywhere near as many people as cancer. If you're American at least, you're likely going to die of cancer or heart attack in a mad race to the finish with your shitty health insurance.

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 24 '21

[deleted]

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u/Castlewallsxo Sep 20 '21

I understand the joke but tbh I think I would rather die of heart disease than cancer

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u/newbies13 Sep 20 '21

Might be completely off base, but I feel like heart disease would be far more treatable than most cancers. I'd guess most people die of heart disease due to the amount of time it takes to get to a hospital and be helped vs the ability of our medicine to help them. Cancer on the other hand seems like we're fighting gorilla warfare and one side just loses a bit more slowly.

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u/imrealbizzy2 Sep 20 '21

Guerilla? Or an enormous primate?

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u/UncontrolableUrge Sep 19 '21

If you look at the caption, much of the increase in Unintentional Injuries was drug overdoses.

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21

Yeah drug distributors started mixing Fentanyl in everything - even cocaine. You think you’re taking heroine or cocaine, you think it’s a safe dose for your tolerance, and BAM you’re dead of fentanyl overdose. It’s the main reason for the huge increase in overdose deaths last year. Disclaimer: I’m a researcher not a user, so I only come from a data perspective.

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u/TheGamecock Sep 19 '21

Yep, woke up to find my friend/roommate and one of his co-workers dead on the floor one morning back in April. They thought they were doing a bump of cocaine from a bag that his co-worker brought over. Turned out there wasn't even a trace of cocaine in the bag. Just fentanyl and baking soda. The case got upgraded to a double homicide. Fuck any dealers/suppliers doing this shit. Hope they're all found and charged for murder.

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21

I 100% agree. I wish there was more communication amongst users so that those dealers could be black-listed. Whatever your moral beliefs on drugs, people looking for a casual high are only looking for just that, and people with addiction are just looking for their next fix so they escape the torture of withdrawal. They’re not looking to die.

I’m so sorry about your roommate and his coworker, and I’m sorry you had to be the one to find them. I can’t even imagine what that was like for you. This epidemic has left a lot of collateral damage for families, friends, and first responders.

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

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u/FIakBeard Sep 19 '21

I was about to comment in here that I picked a great time to get clean, 3 years in December. Then I read this and Im filled with anger and grief, and i dunno sorrow/sympathy for you, i been there man, im so sorry.

I really hope one day we can end this prohibition that sends people to the black market looking for shit. People are gonna do drugs, we need them to be able to safely, along with more treatment and much better health. Access to treatment and follow on mental health services, therapy, and a support network that didnt make me feel ashamed or brushed under the rug, are the reasons I'm still sober today.

This shit makes me so mad. Thank you for sharing it though.

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u/TheGamecock Sep 19 '21

Appreciate it. Congrats to you on getting clean, keep it up! It's unfortunate. I didn't know the coworker or his habits, but I hadn't seen my friend/roommate do coke (or partake any drug besides weed/alcohol) in months and months. It was just one little bump on one random night. Not that it would be less sad if he had an addiction. It just goes to show that no matter what category you fall into, it's just too dangerous to fuck around with these days. Even if you have test kits and all that, when it comes to fentanyl, you could test one sample of the drugs and it'd check out fine. But just a minuscule amount of fentanyl could be lingering elsewhere in the same bag. Plenty enough to still be fatal.

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u/pietoast Sep 19 '21

Damn dude. You doing ok?

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u/TheGamecock Sep 19 '21

I've come to terms with it five months later. It's a day permanently etched in my memory though. I'm waking up to get my morning coffee then all of a sudden I'm stepping over bodies in the kitchen... my brain trying to justify the situation by thinking "oh, they just got drunk last night and passed out on the floor" when that was clearly not the case. It actually took me a while to call the cops because the shock took so long to fade. They were long gone by the time I found them though so it wasn't as if paramedics could've done anything even if I called right when I discovered them. Odds are they were gone within a few minutes, at most, after doing that bump. Fentanyl just does it's thing too fast in lethal doses.

I'm just extremely angry because whoever is responsible is still out there somewhere, probably continuing to sell dirty drugs and killing people.

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u/PrestigiousAd3900 Sep 19 '21

This doesn't seem like a sustainable business model.

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u/MiaKhalifasDad69 Sep 19 '21

Honest and serious question. I am sorry if this sounds dumb. Why do producers mix fentanyl in cocaine? Is there intentions to kill people? Does it cut cost for them?

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21

To be honest, I have absolutely no idea and I ask that same question all the time. It has the opposite effect of cocaine. My only exposure to either is oxycodone after surgery and after pneumonia. It does help so much with breathing during pneumonia. But it mostly made me sleepy, yet sleepless, and constipated, and I’ve never experienced any euphoria with it. So all I have are guesses. Someone who is a current or former drug user and has actually experienced both substances can probably answer that better than me.

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u/Took2ooMuuch Sep 19 '21

Sounds like a version of the "speedball" which was a mix of morphine ann cocaine. To get a high but not nod off I think. But I don't know if they were actually mixed together or just seperately but the same time.

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u/gsfgf Sep 19 '21

Also, addicts are probably more likely to relapse these days.

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u/brotherenigma OC: 1 Sep 19 '21

And then there's carfentanil. TWENTY TO A HUNDRED times more potent than fentanyl - the LD50 is estimated to be just 20-50 micrograms in humans - and far faster acting. Just a rice-grain-sized capsule of carfentanil could be broken up to be placed in an HVAC system and cause an instant OD in hundreds of people. I don't even want to think about what accidentally touching enough of it for it to get through the skin would feel like.

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21

Synthetic opioids entering the market have killed so many more people, no doubt. But the idea that they can kill people by becoming “airborne” or absorbed through casual touch is an urban legend among law enforcement. You can only absorb fentanyl or carfentanil by snorting the powder directly into your nasal cavity, injecting it, or swallowing it. Because it’s not a tiny aerosolized particle, I don’t think placing the powder in an HVAC would do anything. The symptoms reported by LE in these casual contact incidences are the opposite of opioid overdose and more consistent with anxiety symptoms.

Here is more information: https://harmreduction.org/blog/fentanyl-exposure/

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u/itsawonderfullife13 Sep 19 '21

I always say those law enforcement agents are probably covering for the fact that they wanted to try it and see what it's all about

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21

Well judging by the symptoms they report (like tachycardia), they’re trying out the wrong drug. Opioids do the opposite.

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u/brotherenigma OC: 1 Sep 19 '21

For fentanyl, I'd be inclined to agree. The "death by touch" is a myth (and mostly the result of inadvertent aeration of the powder through said touch). But the power of carfentanil is far more unknown.

If I'm reading this NIH paper correctly, carfentanil has been shown to be aerosol-like and fully effective at doses as low as 300-400mg per cubic meter for mice. So maybe like 100mg instead of 20mg per person. Either way, it's a tiny amount. And still far less than a lethal dose of fentanyl. A couple ounces of aerosolized carfentanil would be enough to kill a hundred people ten times over. It happened in Moscow before with the 2002 hostage crisis.

If you touched a pinch of fentanyl and licked your finger like an idiot (or rubbed your eyes, or picked your nose, or any of that) and got Naloxone in time, you'd probably live. I don't think the same can be said for carfentanil.

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u/FakinItAndMakinIt Sep 19 '21

Well, Carfentanil is a large animal tranquilizer so yeah, it has to be strong. But I haven’t heard of people abusing aerosolized carfentanil. It would have been mixed into heroin as a powder or in pill form, which you can’t accidentally inhale. As you said, you’d have to stick it up your nose so it would come in direct contact with your mucosal membranes for it to have any effect. It’s pretty rare too right? It’s just so deadly that I don’t think most dealers are mixing it in. It’s impossible to tell anyway really, because its chemical structure is so similar to fentanyl.

What you’re talking about is a weapon for chemical warfare, not something that could happen by accidental exposure to drugs used by humans.

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u/randathrowaway1211 Sep 19 '21

At that point isn't it simply just a poison instead of a narcotic?

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u/brotherenigma OC: 1 Sep 19 '21

For humans, yes. I believe it does have sedative properties in large animals though, like elk and moose, for which even fentanyl actually isn't enough.

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u/TieDyeRehabHoodie Sep 19 '21

I feel like drug overdoses should be their own category

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u/swankpoppy Sep 19 '21

Often referred to in other sources as “accidents”

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u/invalid_user____ Sep 19 '21

Almost all injuries would be unintentional. Other than suicide/self harm & assault/murder.

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u/MuffinB0y Sep 19 '21

With one BIG catch: covid is ONE disease alone, while cancer and heart diseaseS are groups of different diseases. Just thought I d point that out....

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u/eldelshell Sep 19 '21

Also, how many of those cancer or heart issues patients didn't receive appropriate care because COVID had medical services overwhelmed. Same goes for all the other deaths. Car accident? Sorry, the ICU is full, here's some ibuprofen.

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u/golden_eternity Sep 19 '21

I called an ambulance with my blood pressure at like 200/100 some chest and head pain, face tingling… they took me to the ER then said “oh so they’re closed to ambulance traffic and you don’t count as critical so they’ll probably put you in the lobby to wait.

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u/CmdretteZircon Sep 19 '21

JFC. Symptomatic hypertensive crisis and you’re not critical?

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u/golden_eternity Sep 19 '21

It was mostly on the EMTs doing the handoff totally minimizing my complaints - they spent the ride convincing me it was a panic attack.

They also should have taken me to a different hospital that was the same distance from my house and not closed to traffic.

I had to jump in and add that yes, I had taken my meds hours before I called and yes I did take multiple readings before I called. And yes I did have some pain they didn’t even mention.

Once I showed the doctor my phone with the readings from my new machine he said they’d do a work up.

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u/CmdretteZircon Sep 19 '21

Ok glad to hear that! I mean, regardless of cause, pressures that high need to be investigated ASAP.

I was super-pissed off thinking about ERs full of Covid folks and here you are, a high risk for stroking out, being deemed not critical 🙄

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21

[deleted]

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u/CmdretteZircon Sep 19 '21

100% to everything you just said—and I’m not an ER nurse, so I don’t know first hand. But I worked tele for enough years to have seen many “oh they’re just anxious/high/whatever but we’d better admit them” go bad.

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u/MultiGeometry Sep 19 '21

Cancer deaths were down last year and heart disease deaths were up. There are a lot more f possible underlying factors to that. But for anyone who says that COVID was only killing people with preexisting heart conditions it’s important to note that COVID was attributed to 350,000 deaths, and heart disease not only maintained previous levels, but increased another 5%.

Cancer deaths being down may have very well been COVID getting some folks first…

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u/Gryjane Sep 19 '21

Just to add more perspective, cancer deaths were only down by a few hundred. I definitely agree that covid likely got many of them first.

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u/AliceThursday Sep 19 '21

The note at the bottom does mention this.

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u/thiney49 Sep 19 '21

For Cancer, probably none - it just doesn't kill you so fast that emergency room wait times are relevant. For heart disease, there are definitely people who died from heart attack complications while waiting to get into the emergency room.

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u/Colden_Haulfield Sep 19 '21

No, cancer can kill you in a million other ways that cause emergencies. Sepsis, organ failure, airway compromise etc.

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u/SmokingBeneathStars Sep 20 '21

Seizures, collapsing, blood clots, internal bleeding. I've seen it all.

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u/baldr83 Sep 19 '21

I have an uncle that died of cancer in Dec of 2020. Went undiagnosed for months because despite his best efforts it was extremely difficult for him to get admitted and get biopsies done. I do 100% believe his level of care was greatly diminished because of the delays and inability to get a quick diagnosis, though of course can't say he would have survived if the pandemic wasn't happening

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u/dmsean Sep 19 '21

My wife got kinda sick in February 2020. Was in and out of the hospital from March to June. They just kept sending her back home. It was somewhat obvious they were overwhelmed and didn’t know what was wrong with her. They found a rare colon cancer on July 12th and she died on July 22nd at 38 years old. It’s hard to say what would have happened if the hospitals had more time and resources. Maybe they would have found it in time, maybe not. Maybe they couldn’t do anything, maybe they could have if they got it a few months earlier.

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u/P-W-L Sep 19 '21

10 days later... sorry for your loss that's terrible

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u/COL_D Sep 19 '21

Sorry for your loss. Godspeed moving on with your life.

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u/PullOutGodMega Sep 20 '21

I'm sorry man. I hope you're ok.

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u/sharkie777 Sep 19 '21

This is 100% real. In that period when they were telling people not to go to the hospital and were not doing "elective" or diagnostic procedures. They cancelled my neighbors mom's diagnostic scope and she ended up having a bowel perforation and died.

People make a lot of hyperbole about car accidents needing an ICU but only getting motrin which is clearly fake but scenarios like you described are very real. There probably is/ going to be a lot of undiagnosed cancer that kills people because we stopped preventative treatment and diagnostics for a year.

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u/steamfan12 Sep 19 '21

I know for a fact that my aunt had just gotten back with her ex, things were going great, and he moved in with her. After a week I think he mentioned pain in his chest, my aunt told him to visit a doctor but he didn't because of COVID, two weeks later he had heart attack and died.

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u/TheColonelRLD Sep 19 '21

A ton of hospitals in my area (Boston) were forced to cancel all elective surgeries for months.

I work for a company that partners with the oncology wing of a massive hospital corporation in the US, and from Spring to Fall in the original wave, the numbers of patients they were treating plummeted. The hospitals had to convert resources to covid.

So yeah I guarantee you people died from cancer that would have lived if they'd been diagnosed before covid.

Also random flag, but hospitals are low key broke right now. They've been losing money for like a year and a half. They make money off of elective surgeries. Trying to get a contract signed off in a hospital system is positively miserable right now. They have no idea what the next year holds for them.

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u/Finie Sep 19 '21

Most COVID testing is being paid for at Medicare reimbursement rates, which barely covers the cost of testing. Additionally, costs of basic supplies have skyrocketed due to supply chain shortages. Labs are struggling and 70% of clinical diagnoses are made in the lab.

Admin and management are being downsized and getting pay cuts. Front line staff are leaving in droves and not being replaced, or being replaced with temps, who are basically a waste of time in certain areas. Remaining staff are struggling with burnout. Its a healthcare crisis any way you look at it.

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u/Phytanic Sep 19 '21

this is a HUGE problem that most people are unaware of.

most hospitals exhausted their "rainy-day" fund within a few weeks to months of covids emergence. we are scarily close to witnessing how hard our Healthcare system crashes and burns like the capitalist gods of old...

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u/glmory Sep 19 '21

The chart supports that idea. There were 661 less cancer deaths in 2020 than 2019. Probably because COVID-19 got some cancer patients first.

Heart disease got 31,000 more though probably because of slow emergency response times.

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u/Demon997 Sep 19 '21

What’s relevant for cancer is services like cancer screenings getting shut down or delayed. Catching a tumor a few months later means it kills you.

That’s currently happening to a friend. Terminal brain cancer. Likely would have died no matter what, but they would have caught things much earlier and been able to do more.

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u/SpaceShrimp Sep 19 '21

My brothers wife died of cancer, and while she probably would have died from it regardless, she lost a few months due to covid (or at least due to covid related incompetence). The cancer had spread to her lungs, and as she had a cough from it she wasn't allowed in to the hospital at first. After a while when the cough didn't stop she was given a covid test, which was clear, so she could come in. And then they discovered that the cancer had spread to the lungs, and she died two weeks later.

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u/pxan Sep 19 '21

Not emergency waits, but many hospitals had to postpone all non-emergency surgeries. This affected many people with cancers.

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u/Andoverian Sep 19 '21

Cancer deaths actually went down from '19 to '20, but I wouldn't be surprised if cancer deaths in the next few years were abnormally high due to people having to delay doctor visits that could have caught the cancer earlier.

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u/Petrichordates Sep 19 '21

Surgeries were regularly delayed in 2020, covid undoubtedly killed some cancer patients as a result.

Cancer isn't treated in the emergency room anyway.

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u/eldelshell Sep 19 '21

Yeah, but think how many had to stop their cancer treatments because of fear, lock down, lack of resources, etc.

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u/stomp_right_now Sep 19 '21

I know two men who refused to see a doctor about their symptoms for a year+ because they didn't want to burden overworked hospital staff and/or were afraid to visit a hospital during the pandemic. Both were recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancers that could have been treated if caught earlier. COVID will be a major contributor to their deaths in 1-4 years.

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u/thiney49 Sep 19 '21

Yeah that's definitely fair, probably too many.

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u/email_NOT_emails Sep 19 '21

I think this is shortsighted, in that COVID has been going on for well over a year. Elective surgeries have been curtailed during this time, which means a whole bunch of stuff that should have been done, wasn't done.

A metric that will be curious is in the next 2, 5 or 10 years, is cancers that could have been scoped / probed but were not due to a backlog of sick people with COVID.

EDIT I see several people here have already stated this sentiment.

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u/EatAllotaDaPita Sep 20 '21

This just isn’t true. When people die of cancer it’s essentially always from complications, not the cancer itself. Complications can and do happen very suddenly. I have no data to say whether this did happen or not, but it is absolutely plausible that ER and hospital wait times contributed to early cancer mortality. Not to mention the delayed “elective” surgeries for diagnosis/resection, delays in outpatient follow up for chemotherapy initiation, etc. Source: I am a doctor and regularly treat pts with cancer

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u/spacetimecellphone Sep 19 '21

Many people vocally avoided hospitals for fear of Covid. Others had “elective” procedures cancelled or indefinitely delayed, and because of Covid restrictions, capacity decreased. This affected screenings and possible earlier treatment for sure. Question is how much. Some mild symptoms that are eventually explained by certain cancers are easier to ignore than others, sometimes it gets so bad that it becomes an emergency.

IIRC the main symptom of esophageal cancer is acid reflux related pain, and the survival rate is around 20% because so few people are diagnosed at an early stage. By the time it gets bad enough to go in, the cancer has usually already spread.

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u/SatansSwingingDick Sep 19 '21

Death via covid is tied directly to obesity as well.

Obesity already causes 1 out of 5 deaths

https://www.medscape.com/answers/123702-11499/how-many-deaths-in-the-us-are-associated-with-obesity

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u/MuffinB0y Sep 19 '21

Obesity being a comorbidity, that s no surprise. We do see a shift in the impact of comorbidities though: patient dying from covid a year ago are not the same as those dying of delta variant (younger, less disparity linked to gender, etc.).

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21

The other catch of course being that covid is a communicable, highly-transmittable disease. Cancer and heart disease are not contagious.

And though this wasn't the case in 2020, death from covid can now be largely prevented by getting 2 shots of a vaccine series. Heart disease and cancer occur due to lifelong choices/genetic factors, and are not so easily preventable.

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u/TheNoxx Sep 19 '21

The bigger other catch is that we didn't have any real amount of covid deaths till April of 2020, so it would be far more accurate to count April of 2020 to April of 2021 in terms of deaths, putting it closer to 550k, IIRC, and that's not including the ~300k mysterious additional respiratory deaths that have shown up in some mortality counts around the US.

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21

Excellent point. Covid was barely in the country in the early months of 2020.

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u/UpbeatEast Sep 19 '21

Also covid didn't really start in earnest until mid- to late-March. It was the number 3 cause of deaths in 2020 in about 2/3 of the year.

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u/ChornWork2 Sep 19 '21

while cancer and heart diseaseS are groups of different diseases

Probably better stated as mutliple causes than multiple diseases. But wholly agree with your point

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u/Deenyc43 Sep 19 '21

Also you can live for years after you've had cancer and heart disease before you finally die from it. COVID will kill you in days.

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u/TheMadTemplar Sep 19 '21

Covid can kill you in days. The actual mortality rate of it is rather low, so saying "it will kill you" isn't correct.

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u/TehDragonGuy Sep 19 '21

I think their point was "if it's gonna kill you, it'll do it in days". Not really sure how that matters, though.

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u/Nylon_Riot Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21

The average American lifespan dropped another year, last year, due to Covid deaths.

I didn't realize lower lung infections were a contender. It doesn't seem to be talked about very much.

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u/tommy0guns Sep 19 '21

Note: typically suicide is listed in the top 10. Because the introduction of Covid, suicide is lopped of the list. Suicide decreased by 2677. This is different than the popular narrative.

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u/skeetsauce Sep 19 '21

Iirc, suicide rate dropped dramatically in WW2. Something about conflict makes us more resilient to some forms of depression maybe?

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u/Froody129 Sep 19 '21

Perhaps it's the belonging to a group that does the trick. The sentiment seems to be that despite the whole world being so connected many feel alone. It makes sense to me that a a kind of "war" against the pandemic where everyone is in it together, fighting a common enemy, would help people to feel like they're part of something bigger.

Objectively the best thing most could have done is to stay at home and isolate. So a lot of the self-deriding connotations surrounding that sort of behaviour during normal periods are removed.

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u/maledin Sep 19 '21

Yeah, this is basically the running theory. Contrary to popular belief, mental health improves substantially during times of conflict/disaster and the masses generally don’t devolve into a state of “anarchy.” People like to feel a sense of belonging and purpose in their community… who would’ve thought?

There’s a book called Tribe by Sebastian Junger that goes into this more — it’s really good.

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u/AgentTin Sep 20 '21

I'm no longer a weird shut in, I'm doing my civic duty!

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u/P-W-L Sep 19 '21

kinda ?

traumatic events (having a big importance on our lives) stimulate a specific brain pattern, releasing dopamine, which is known to reduce symptoms of depression. Phylogenetic explanation is that in a crisis, you need all your attention on the crisis and can't afford to complain about anything else

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u/slickyslickslick Sep 19 '21

not scientific evidence, but there have been many comments I've seen about depressed people who said that they felt better during lockdown because now they had an excuse to be shut in and that the suffering from everyone else made them feel less depressed about their current situation.

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u/basxto Sep 19 '21

Since more meetings happen online, it’s easier to meet up with people. If you feel bad, you can just leave the cam disabled and it’s easier/faster to retread.

When the first wave hit r/foreveralone was basically like “guys, we trained for this our whole life”.

I attended an event this year, which I might never have without covid. The bar for joinging a stream is a lot lower than buying a ticket, booking a hotel and getting a train ticket. But now that it has been fun and I got to know some people, it would be easier when everything opens up again.

I also plan to find (new) friends etc. through online services now, because there are more people showing up who got social contacts severed through covid.

But I want back to pre-covid. Leaving the house is even harder than before and that’s slowly comming back at me. I wouldn’t say I feel better, but it’s easier to escape my isolation phases.

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u/Hi_Supercute Sep 19 '21

can confirm. My friends and I had quite a long conversation recently about how often I’m the one struggling with depression, to an extreme of suicidal ideation and struggling with life but now I’m doing pretty well AND that’s because now that life really is shit, it fits my expectation and I’m mentally thriving. Whereas my normally really stable friends are struggling because you know, they didn’t expect life to be this shitty. I called it though, I told everyone and they wouldn’t listen.

Luckily I can be a good support and there for them through this time just like they always have been for me

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u/FPiN9XU3K1IT Sep 19 '21

Also, remote everything. I'm kind of a shut-in and I have really been enjoying that you can do so many more things remotely nowadays. And there's better excuses for getting out of famil gatherings, lol.

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u/chrondus Sep 19 '21

Can confirm. People suck. The less I have to deal with them, the better I feel.

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21

Exactly. Suicides were 11th on the list and decreased

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u/LottaCloudMoney Sep 19 '21

Sure, but this is 2020. Unfortunately, I’d be pretty surprised to see a decrease in the 2021 dataset.

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u/TheRnegade Sep 19 '21

Not that I'm saying otherwise, I do know suicide decreased, but I wonder if there was a difference in the kind of people who typically commit suicide from last year. We know that introverts loved being inside and away from most folks but what about extroverts? Would this upending of society cause people who normally would be mentally healthy flip?

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u/wanted_to_upvote Sep 19 '21

Just as important is to point out that during January 26, 2020–February 27, 2021, an estimated 545,600–660,200 more persons than expected died in the United States. This stomps on the stupid notion that covid deaths are just regular deaths that have been mis-classified. https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7015a4.htm

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u/SurpriseBurrito Sep 20 '21

Great source, I point to that one all the time.

I work in life insurance and our claims have been hovering about 25% higher than we would normally expect, and typically we are VERY good at predicting death rates. Once we started seeing this rate emerge it was easy to tell we had a major mortality event materializing regardless of whatever the cause of deaths are on paper.

Like you are saying all anyone has to do is look at “all cause” mortality in order to realize this is a crisis.

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u/disposable2016 Sep 20 '21

When did you start seeing that rate emerge?

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u/SurpriseBurrito Sep 20 '21

Pretty sure it was June/July 2020. Most months have been elevated like that since then, with a couple better months mid 2021, but of course claims are very recently back up again.

Now there is a bit of a lag time for us, someone has to report the claim, verify the death, pay claim, claim hits the books. It is not uncommon for beneficiaries to be relatively unfamiliar with a policy that has been in force for 30 years or whatever so it is not always a quick process to get it reported.

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21

Source: Journal of the American Medical Association

Charts: Excel

Important to note that according to the Journal of the American Medical Association that COVID-19 is likely undercounted: “...These increases may indicate, to some extent, underreporting of COVID-19, ie, limited testing in the beginning of the pandemic may have resulted in underestimation of COVID-19 mortality”

Full paragraph here: “Trends in mortality for leading causes of death are important indicators of shifting patterns in mortality. During the COVID-19 pandemic, changes in leading causes provide insight into the direct and indirect effects of the pandemic on mortality burden. Most of the increase in deaths from 2019 to 2020 was directly attributed to COVID-19. However, increases were also noted for several other leading causes of death. These increases may indicate, to some extent, underreporting of COVID-19, ie, limited testing in the beginning of the pandemic may have resulted in underestimation of COVID-19 mortality.6 Increases in other leading causes, especially heart disease, Alzheimer disease, and diabetes, may also reflect disruptions in health care that hampered early detection and disease management. Increases in unintentional injury deaths in 2020 were largely driven by drug overdose deaths.”

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u/swankpoppy Sep 19 '21

Hell of an infographic! Very nice work :)

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21

Thank you!

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u/kapitanski Sep 19 '21

You didn't read anything that would explain that difference between 503k and 345k? Even with underreporting that's a hell of a gap... Could most of that be people not getting treatment for other things that are usually not necessarily deadly?

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u/JetKeel Sep 19 '21

Underreporting + healthcare hesitancy (mainly due to lack of coverage or fear of high bills) + not believing and then just dying, might get you there actually. But wholly just a guess from me.

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u/Dyslexic_Wizard Sep 19 '21

You’d think that’d be balanced somewhat by the flu killing far less people due to social distancing.

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21

am i misinterpreting the graph? It looks like flu deaths went up 3,712?

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u/SRTHellKitty Sep 19 '21

Influenza and pneumonia. I believe during the beginning of the pandemic many COVID deaths were being reported as Pneumonia. Maybe that has an effect? Also there were still flu deaths from the 2019-2020 flu season.

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u/Unidang Sep 20 '21

Graph of deaths with Influenza or Pneumonia as the underlying cause of death.

So, early 2020 was an average flu and pneumonia season until about week 12, when pneumonia deaths started increasing, instead of decreasing which they usually do around that time of year. That was obviously undiagnosed COVID. Then, as tests became available and doctors learned to diagnose COVID, things returned to normal. Usually flu and pneumonia deaths surge in mid- to late-December thru January and stay high until Spring. That didn't happen during the 2020-2021 flu season. Flu was almost non-existent.

Note that the above graph only includes pnuemonia as the Underlying Cause of Death. For all deaths involving pneumonia, see this graph. Deaths involving pneumonia include deaths where pneumonia is the underlying cause of death as well as deaths where pneumonia is a contributing cause of death plus deaths where pneumonia is a sequela (consequence) of the underlying cause of death. In this case there is a huge surge in pneumonia as a result of COVID.

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u/earlgreybubbletea Sep 19 '21

Hey quick question but why does it show half a million covid deaths on the top but then on the second half of the infographic it lists covid deaths at only over 300k? Why is it different/ what am I missing?

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u/Dovahkiin812KW Sep 19 '21

It's a little confusing, but the top part shows an increase in overall deaths from all sources for that year. So it wasn't half a million Covid deaths, but rather an increase of half a million deaths from all sources.

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u/Magnuscaligo Sep 19 '21

I'm confused, according to the first graphic it makes it seem like covid was responsible for the majority of the deaths in 2020. However the very next line it says covid was responsible for only 1 in 10 deaths. So why is the first graphic so large?

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u/tenemu Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 19 '21 This

Increase per year. The total number of deaths was 3.3 million. But in 2020 we had an increase of 500,000 deaths compared to 2019.

2019 saw an increase of 15,000 deaths compared to 2018.

You can see the actual figures in small print below that first graphic.

It threw me off too. Also proves that covid made a dramatic change in the number of deaths and basically proves that it’s not doctors changing all causes of death to “covid” to pump up the covid fear. 500,000 more people died in 2020. That can’t be explained by poor death certificate paperwork.

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u/Heatsnake Sep 19 '21

500,000 more people died in 2020. That can’t be explained by poor death certificate paperwork.

Which is why conspiracy theorist choose to just straight up ignore it

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u/eri- Sep 19 '21

Or deny that the numbers are even real. That's what they do here in my country.

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u/Heatsnake Sep 19 '21

It would mean hospitals made 500k extra death certificate for people that don't exist. It would be a huge conspiracy spread out all over and involve thousands of people, and there's zero evidence for it

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u/eri- Sep 20 '21

Don't need to tell me its not realistic, it would be quite the amazing feat of coordination and keeping quiet.

Unsurprisingly, 99% of those people who think that have low end jobs with no need to coordinate a goddamn thing.

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u/IllIllIIlIllI Sep 19 '21

Every one of those anti-vaxxers has a story like “my cousins buddies uncle died in a motorcycle accident and they listed the death as covid.”

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21 edited Sep 24 '21

[deleted]

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u/ironrhino88 Sep 19 '21

What is the reason behind the other 160k extra excess deaths on top of Covid? Covid accounts for 340k or so, but it increases by 500k. Anyone have any ideas?

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u/aztronut Sep 20 '21

Covid! Not all but most probably. My MIL died of covid but her death certificate said pneumonia. This is how we're going to find out how many people were actually killed by covid, the official reports are purposely inaccurate.

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u/protox13 Sep 20 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

Similar, relative died of "heart disease" because even though he tested positive for COVID he was asymptomatic. 🤷‍♂️ I mean, ok, but he didn't die until 2.5 weeks after testing positive and was otherwise stable.

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u/Dyslexic_Wizard Sep 19 '21

Well In Idaho they’ve stopped doing resuscitation for cardiac arrest since hospital loading is too high.

My wife works in an ICU (not in Idaho) and 100% of the beds are Covid patients currently, they’re also putting beds in hallways.

Pretty tough to get medical care when the hospitals are packed.

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u/stdexception Sep 20 '21

Underreporting of COVID deaths, most likely. The footnote below the graphs mention that.

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21

Yes, some of it can be seen on my chart on the bottom right, but also in my citations I post a paragraph by JAMA stating that COVID is likely undercounted and attributed to their types of deaths.

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u/flipmcf Sep 20 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

How does one respond to these statements:

“Data is exaggerated because hospitals were mis-labeling and over-labeling deaths as COVID related because…”

“I saw someone come in from a car accident and die. They tested positive for COVID, so it got marked as a COVID death”

Do I roll my eyes and move on, or do I begin my journey into conspiracy theory?

Is there a less extreme response that responsible data-driven adults provide?

Edit: saw the best response below in the comments:

500,000 more people died in 2020. That can’t be explained by poor death certificate paperwork.
u/tenemu

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u/billFoldDog Sep 19 '21

I really feel like the first chart is very strange and has the effect of being misleading.

Most readers are dumb, and will assume the chart is showing number of deaths, not increase in total deaths.

Maybe it would be better to show a stacked bar chart, where each year you present the total number of deaths, and show the increase as a red chunk on top of each bar.

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u/fleeeb OC: 1 Sep 19 '21

Or to keep the chart, but just add a + in front of the numbers. That will show is an increase rather than a total more intuitively

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u/billFoldDog Sep 20 '21

I really like this suggestion!

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u/LeighCedar Sep 19 '21

I don't know, if these people can't read this chart I doubt the stacked bar chart will be any easier for them.

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u/DiaMat2040 Sep 19 '21

And it wasn't even there for the whole 2020

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u/Eldiabolo18 Sep 19 '21

Honestly I can‘t comprehend really what that number in the heading means... why not express as 1.x out of ten? Which also makes it easy to get a percantagey

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u/Hiebram Sep 19 '21

Well, I just rounded 9.7 to 10 anyway, so call it 1 out of 10 🙂

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u/k-uke Sep 19 '21

Same.

I also prefer 1 out of 10 (as opposed to 1.10309 out of 10)

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u/liovantirealm7177 Sep 19 '21

idk, ig it's preference as to which statistic makes it easier to visualise from person to person

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u/[deleted] Sep 19 '21 edited Oct 05 '21

[deleted]

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u/[deleted] Sep 20 '21

early in the pandemic there was a lot of comparisons made between the flu and covid…and they held up for a very very short while…covid very quickly declared itself as far more lethal.

people can hem and haw, but the overall increase in deaths by 500,000 really settles all that non sense. covid shows up…500,000 more people die than expected. covid bad.

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u/Jumponamonkey Sep 20 '21

What's interesting here as well is how easily transmitted Covid was compared to the flu, and other viruses. The interventions we have in place to prevent covid transmission have slowed it down, but it is still prevalent in spite of them. Compare that to other respiratory viruses like cold and flu which have become far less common because of the anti covid measures. I'm immunosuppressed so I normally get a fair few bugs each year and I've had ONE very mild cold which lasted a couple of days at most, since January 2020.

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u/Kuroude7 Sep 20 '21

And that ‘3rd deadliest’ is misleading, because Heart disease covers a wide range of things, and cancer (obligatory fuck cancer) covers over 60 different types, lumped into one category. COVID-19 is just one disease.

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u/chason99 Sep 19 '21

5% of deaths to covid list covid as the only cause. So I wonder how the the reporting is on that. Is it up to the doctor's discretion to write cause of death? Do all causes of death get compiled? Is it even possible to know in every case? Anyone work in the field or educated on this wanna help me out?

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u/TheOsForOhYeah Sep 19 '21

Here's a podcast episode from last year which explains how death certificates are filled out and how cause of death is determined. It's definitely a sloppier system than I realized, but the point they make is that it's very rare that there's one obvious cause of death. Often it's a cascade of illnesses that eventually overwhelm the body, and COVID was a contributing factor in many of them last year.

Link: https://maximumfun.org/episodes/sawbones/death-certificates/

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u/2jesse1996 Sep 19 '21

Its always funny seeing people tip toe around covid being the cause of death.

It's like saying 'oh he didn't die of a car crash, he died because of blood loss' while both are correct the only reason why he had blood loss was because of the car accident.

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u/why_rob_y Sep 19 '21

I think the increase of about 500,000 deaths from all causes in 2020 tells most of the story regardless.

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u/chason99 Sep 20 '21

Do you not think the co morbidity is important data? It seems to me that knowing who is most at risk (i.e. obese people making up nearly 80% of deaths) is very important data.

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u/wehrmann_tx Sep 19 '21

So death certificates are supposed to list the most specific cause of death at the top. If you had a car accident, it wouldn't say car accident, it would say something like "ruptured aorta" and the next line would say "due to or consequence of" and they'd put "vehicle crash."

Covid19 is no different. Top line should usually be "Acute respiratory syndrome", "pneumonia" or "myocardial infarction" and the "as a result of" would be covid19.

Basically what happened is 5% of doctors filled out the form wrong. Covid19 isn't the cause of death, it causes specific conditions that lead to death.

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u/A-Grey-World Sep 19 '21

Even if you didn't have that, an extra half a million people died. Chances are the number for covid is under counting significantly.

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u/floriafure Sep 20 '21

My mom died of cancer last year and it made me feel odd to look at the exact number of cancer deaths of which she was one on this chart.

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u/shadowromantic Sep 19 '21

It was the third leading cause of death with huge lockdowns and people working from home. Imagine how much worse it would've been if we, as a society, hadn't taken any precautions

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u/eventfarm Sep 19 '21

See Idaho as an example of this. We locked down before it was even bad here. And then opened up just in time for it to get really bad. Now we will never close again, nor have a mask mandate.

The result is our entire state is under crisis standards of care. We had a huge Boise state University football game yesterday with 30000 people in the stands. I challenge you to go find a mask in the pictures.

Next week we have an enormous music festival happening. While they are requiring vaccination or negative test and masks, no one here is practicing masking so I have little hope that it will happen.

So if you want to see what happens when we don't really care about it, keep an eye on Idaho

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u/epicConsultingThrow Sep 19 '21

Literally the only saying grace is that spread occurs less frequently outdoors than indoors. Just imagine if it was an indoor game.

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u/MajesticGuava Sep 20 '21

So obesity is still our biggest threat.

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u/Eleminohpe Sep 20 '21

Yes. Even in covid deaths.

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u/irrationalglaze Sep 19 '21

I have a question I'm hoping someone could answer.

The overall increase in deaths was 503,976, but covid deaths only made up 345,323 deaths.

Im sure it'll be a combination of things, but 158,163 other deaths is a lot.

The small print said that covid deaths may have been underreported, but could they really be underreported by ~150k?

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21

80k of the 158k difference can be seen on the third chart...Showing the YOY change. That leaves about 78k between covid and things not shown on the chart...ie not in the top 10.

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u/Plyb Sep 19 '21

The first chart on here is a bit misleading imo. I get this is supposed to be showing that COVID is really bad, but the way it looks at first glance it looks like 20x as many people died from COVID as everything else combined. It took me longer than I care to admit to realize what it’s actually saying

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u/anonymous8972 Sep 19 '21

Seems like there should be a bigger emphasis on health based off what most people seem to be dieing from.

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u/Jhawk2k Sep 19 '21

A ton of people that live healthy lifestyles die from heart diseases, most of them are just old. But yeah, there definitely are lifestyle choices that could help a lot of younger people.

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u/ShrimpShackShooters_ Sep 19 '21

I’m surprised injuries increased. Figured more people at home would mean fewer injuries?

Never mind, it’s in the notation. Drug overdoses was the cause. Pretty interesting

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u/PhotonMuffin Sep 20 '21 edited Sep 20 '21

Here's a genuine question if anyone can shed some light on this for me. Information surrounding covid has been an absolute mess even now with a ridiculous amount of conflicting reports from a bunch of resources. My question is who exactly were the the most susceptible victims of covid? The immunodeficient? The elderly? The young? Even now i still cant say with any certainty

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u/CurveLegitimate2931 Sep 20 '21

Imagine letting 101k die from diabetes just to make money.

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u/Pika_Fox Sep 20 '21

Its important to note both heart disease and cancer are not a single disease, but an entire category each.

Covid was the largest single cause of death period.

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u/Hot_Cap1040 Sep 20 '21

I guess you ban anyone who doesn’t say “covid bad, I agree!”. Myself I’m fully vaccinated, and I just enjoy having a critical discussion, you know…like what science is? But I guess you just enjoy sitting on a throne of judgement

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u/Phil-McRoin Sep 20 '21

It's important not to get too hung up on data like this. Its interesting but a lot of those deaths probably would have happened anyway from other causes. At the same time, some deaths from other causes, such as heart disease, wouldn't have happened if the person didn't catch covid weeks or months earlier.

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u/Eatit6560154 Sep 20 '21

Remember: its all types of cancers, all types of heart disease, and then JUST COVID19 for 3rd.

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u/stingoh Sep 19 '21

Covid-19 was the 3rd highest cause of death despite drastic measures being put in place. Imagine if nothing had been done... This is what bothers me when people when say well this or that causes more deaths...

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u/Timeeeeey Sep 19 '21

Holy shit the number of stupid people in the comments is worrying

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u/darthspacecakes Sep 19 '21

Where have you been the last couple of years?

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u/HappyInNature Sep 19 '21

That's basically what you get whenever you sort a big thread by controversial.

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u/ultralame Sep 19 '21

I love how covid is third to heart disease and cancer.

Cancer and heart disease are collections of problems. Lung cancer and pancreatic cancer are completely different things, with different causes.

Break it down that way and covid is by far #1.

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u/FuFuKhan Sep 19 '21

Others have pointed out above coronary heart disease as a singular disease still kills more than covid.

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u/SplitIndecision Sep 19 '21

The US has 691,562 total COVID deaths. If 345,323 of them died last year, that means 346,239 people have died this year. We have already exceeded last year's death toll.

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u/davidleo24 Sep 19 '21

Yup, oficially. However The excess deaths seem to indicate that 100k ish extra people died in 2020 without a clear explanation. Those are probably covid too at a time with less tests.

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u/Arkainso Sep 19 '21

So the number of people who died from influenza and pneumonia (not related to covid) increased from 2019 to 2020? That is very interesting and completely destroys the argument that influenza deaths are mysteriously down because they are just counting influenza deaths as covid.

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u/JPAnalyst OC: 121 Sep 19 '21

Exactly. If you are sorting by time, look two comments down.