The Skeptics Guide #797 - Oct 17 2020
Came near my Cups Yeah Yeah so He would have gone up in a tree. That's how they attack. He wouldn't have been probably attacking him from the ground with no element of surprise. That's not how they hunt and he would occasionally like leap out I'm just scare them and then would still just trump behind him at a certain. Does I think it was just Move along I get away from the guy the Guy No. Hey. Hey And I think the guy did I mean at least towards the end pretty much everything right I just don't like the coverage of these things I hate when these things go viral, they're like look how scary you? Cougar wants to eat man Oh, man in cougars habitat man should he went up to his cubs up to investigate investigators cubs don't freaking. Do you see that offer Predator cubs you leave? Yeah. All right. Well, the we're just GONNA go right to the news item because my first news item is about covert and so this'll be our discussion of covid for the week Brian. We've been covering the pandemic pretty much every week because it's you know it's still very, very active. The numbers are still going up the numbers of the US are going up the numbers worldwide in terms of daily new cases is going up Some countries are starting to worry that we're seeing the beginning of the second wave. This is still a very, very active issue, but I want to talk about is a study that was published recently looking at excess deaths, a topic that we have brought up previously with respect to the pandemic. But this was the largest study today looking at the entire United States not a regional study. What they did this compiled. Just the all deaths, all caused deaths in the United States from March first to August first, that's when this data covers and the fact they. Just, add to ask the question how many excess DNA have there been during this pandemic. The number of deaths per year in the united in the United States is remarkably consistent. It's very, very consistent because it's all averages out you know. and. So this when when there's a You know a huge deviation from that very stable baseline it's pretty easy to detect. And what they found. was that the increase in the background death rate in the US was increased by twenty percent while? Yeah. Increased by twenty twenty percent. Wow. So, that's two hundred and twenty, five, thousand, five, hundred, thirty excess deaths over that. Appear over that period. Now, if you extrapolate that to the entire pandemic that comes out to about three hundred in one, thousand, nine, hundred, thousand, four, hundred to excess, right. So the. Worldwide official number is two hundred and fifteen for the US and and says, the real number might be closer to three hundred twenty. Thousand Excess deaths here's the other part of this is that old the pandemic deaths deaths attributed to cove? It only account for sixty seven percent or two thirds of those excess deaths. The rest are combination of other things the restaurant combination of other things. So get to that in a second but I In, in researching this topic. I wanted to answer the question. How are they counting Cova deaths? because. We hear a lot of conspiracy theories about coding wrong or over coding or coating to get more money were including probable cases and you know they're calling everything over data cetera et Cetera just short interest. That's all nonsense. But the reporting of Death Stu cove it is in the United States is complicated because every state has their own rules and this is another manner in which there has been a lack of leadership at the federal level. It would be nice to just Eric guys that we're all gonna use this method. So every state is reporting at the same way. So and there's two different ways in which states can report numbers differently. So let me just quickly describe what? Those are states could report deaths based upon either the death certificate. That's one method whatever is reported on the death certificate. If covid is listed as in the, there's like there's a first order and second order causes. The first order is anything acute that led directly to the patients deaths right so they might say like their heart stop doing ammonia due to cove right so covert anywhere in that chain of events that's considered a cova death, the secondary ones like. Chronic hypertension and that didn't help you. That's not just a chronic underlying condition did not. More, likely to die but didn't can directly contribute to their. So these are basically if you have covert listed. I think it's fair to say you would not have died. Had you not contracted cove it right so those are pretty I think straightforward but there's some states don't go by the death certificate they report deaths in people who were diagnosed with Cova. So technically speaking if you had cova did and you got hip our car, you would get coded as a covert death so it makes sense. Is there a time limit on that? It's like you if you die with him while while you have the diagnosis. So it's a basically by case, it's case Cova, case deaths versus the cause of death by death certificate most states use the death certificate method but summer using the case covert case method wouldn't it be nice if we had like a national policy you What I just said now, the other way that states different some states only report confirmed cases of Covid as a covert breath. And some states, a minority but some states allow for probable cases to be coded as Odessa. These are people who meet two criteria. They clinically have a picture consistent with covert nineteen and they epidemiologically fit as a case of covert nineteen meaning that the timing works out and there's no reason why would have died of anything else etcetera. So if you meet both clinical and epidemiological criteria for probably having Cova. then. Some states will include that in their numbers. So, again, some people point. Oh they're just calling anything probable cases of COVID. That's not true. You have to actually meet strict criteria. It just means that you they never got around to getting a laboratory test and also you would think that early in the in the spread of this disease, we didn't have access to a lot of tests and so homer probably did have to quote we the Royal. We probably did have to code a lot of these early ones, but actually that's not reasonable assumption but that's not true. So I looked into it and essentially only about five percent in states that include probable cases they only represent about five percent on average berry state to state. Of their total. So ninety five percent of the cases are still. Laboratory confirm right.