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‘Data cleanup’ reveals more COVID deaths occurred in Washoe County

By Bob Conrad

Nearly 40 more people have died of COVID-19 in Washoe County than previously reported. That’s because of a data cleanup at the state that corrected actual COVID-19 deaths in Washoe County. 

Washoe County health district officials today said 36 more deaths occurred from 2020 through 2022.

“The state went back through vital records and death certificates to look for any cases that had not been tabulated over the course of the pandemic as deaths that were attributed to COVID-19,” District Health Officer Kevin Dick said today. “It’s basically a clean up from the overwhelming number of cases that we’ve had.”

With the new tabulation, that puts Washoe County’s total deaths from COVID-19 at 1,259.

Hospitalizations on the rise

Hospitalizations are on the rise again, which is pushing the region into the high range of COVID-19 cases according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria. 

“The bottom line is we are seeing more hospilizations now,” Dick said.

Nearly 75 people are hospitalized in Washoe County with suspected COVID-19.

“Our hospitalizations per 100,000 over a seven day period has been over 13, and the CDC threshold is 10 to move to high, and so that level pushed us over 10 and hence the CDC community level of ‘high,’” Dick added.

New COVID cases are about 200 per day. Dick said the number is greater than that due to at-home testing or people not getting tested.

“We know there’s a lot of cases out there just looking around. We know that from cases that have been occurring in our workplace here at the health district,” Dick said. 

If numbers go down, the region will be back into the medium level. 

Health officials continue to recommend vaccinations and boosters to reduce the risk of severe illness.

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