Oklahoma State Department of Health expecting jump in total COVID-19 cases, deaths after review of numbers; review is set to rectify discrepancy


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Oklahoma State Department of Health said they are expecting an increase in Oklahoma’s total COVID-19 cases and deaths Thursday after an annual review of the numbers.

The new timeline is announced to rectify Oklahoma’s death toll discrepancy, since the state’s total lags behind the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s count.

OSDH held a news conference last week in order to update the numbers, but instead they announced a delay. The department’s epidemiologist, Jolianne Stone, said they plan to post their updated numbers on Saturday with what they call reconciliation data. The review was an annual process where they go back and audit their numbers to ensure accuracy. Stone said they are expecting a jump by over 1,000 in both COVID-19 cases and deaths.

“We anticipate a one-time adjustment in Monday’s reported number of cases and deaths,” Stone said.

Stone said they are expecting to add 1,366 cases and 1,053 deaths to their total numbers.

“These are cases and deaths that have occurred since the beginning of the pandemic that we have done our due diligence on to assure that they’re accurately reported to the CDC,” Stone said.

hospital bed
COVID-19 death discrepancy: OSDH, CDC numbers not matching up (Photo: KFOR)

The long-awaited change comes after the department originally announced a news conference to address it. Instead, they announced the delay.

“This was done as part of a typical annual review process that all states must complete in accordance with CDC disease surveillance and reporting guidelines,” Stone said.

The state’s death count showed a discrepancy compared to the CDC’s. Their process relies on death certificates. But Oklahoma’s process is a little different, meaning the department had to go through each and every death certificate from 2020 to determine if someone dies of COVID-19.

“We feel very, very confident that the COVID-19 death data that was reported to CDC today adequately and accurately reflects the COVID-19 deaths that we saw here in Oklahoma,” Stone said.

Again, this is a rise in the state’s total numbers. Officials also announced in this meeting that the current trend of cases, deaths and hospitalizations continue to decline, and they hope it remains that way through the fall.

Continued Coronavirus Coverage

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