Alameda County in California has recently revised their metrics for recording COVID-19 deaths, which resulted in a 25 percent lower death count.
It appears that the county had been recording deaths of everybody who had tested positive at any time as having died from COVID-19, regardless of the actual circumstances of their deaths and if COVID-19 was a direct or contributing cause.
Alameda County officials have decided to revise the numbers to align with the California Department of Public Health's guidance on how to classify deaths.
Alameda County Public Health Department spokeswoman Neetu Balram said via statement, according to The Oaklandside: "There are definitely people who died from reasons that were clearly not caused by COVID."
After reviewing codes entered by county coroners into CalREDIE, the state’s database for disease reporting and surveillance, 411 cases were dropped from the running total, changing it from 1,634 to 1,223 deaths caused by COVID-19.
"Obviously our definition was broader than the state's," mentioned Balram, also commenting that policies regarding pandemic measures have not changed.