The reporting of COVID-19 positive data regarding Michigan nursing home residents and staff members is “erratic,” according to a July 26 report from the Record-Eagle.
Data samples gathered by the Traverse City newspaper showed that COVID-19 positive cases and death rates were either misrepresented initially or recategorized over the past few weeks. The state reported on July 12 that 2,016 nursing home residents had died of COVID-19 but two days later it reported 2,013 COVID-19 deaths in that population.
On July 21, the state reported 1,983 resident deaths due to COVID-19, a number much lower than had been reported in previous weeks. The Michigan health department released a statement saying the shift in death rates was likely due to errors made in facility reporting that the agency then corrected.
A spokesperson from the agency said that nursing homes are charging multiple staff members with reporting numbers and in some cases had duplicate entries. The issues were corrected after one of the department’s periodic data audits.
The article also noted a history of the dashboards changing mid-day without explanation and potential data entry issues.
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