Local Doctor Weighs In On COVID-19 Death Percentage Numbers From CDC

Monday, August 31st 2020, 7:22 pm
By: Erica Rankin

According to a weekly update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, COVID-19 was mentioned as the only cause of death for 6% of COVID-19 deaths.

For the other 94%, it is said there were, on average, two to three comorbidities listed as additional causes that lead to a death.

Dr. David Chansolme, the medical director of infection prevention at Integris Health, said when breaking down these numbers, they can easily be misinterpreted.

"Six percent of the people who died of COVID only died of COVID. Ninety-four percent had comorbidities, but in my opinion they died of COVID,” said Chansolme.

He noted that some of the confusion could lie in the certificate of death for a patient.

But, he said, either way they have known from the beginning that if someone has one or more underlying health conditions they would have a more difficult time fighting off the virus.

"It is much more likely for someone to die of COVID if they have other medical conditions on top of it,” said Chansolme. “By far, most patients in our hospital have a couple of comorbidities."