So Many Lives Lost
Two years of Pandemic have caused excess deaths that need explanation
There are endless speculations about excess deaths in the past two years of the COVID pandemic. Meaning the number of deaths above pre-pandemic years. What are the causes of the excess deaths? Some “experts” only invoke COVID deaths. Others are screaming about vaccine deaths ranging from 150,000 to 400,000 for 2021. But there are also deaths only indirectly linked to the COVID disease.
The conclusion of the following analysis of new CDC data is that there have been about 400,000 non-COVID excess deaths for the two pandemic years, mostly collateral deaths and likely some vaccine deaths.
A rational explanation for non-COVID excess deaths is collateral deaths resulting from many negative consequences of what the government and pandemic public health actions have done, namely lockdowns. impediments to getting normal health care and hospital procedures, and school closings. Add on many economic impacts, such as business closings, job losses and financial impacts. Collateral deaths cover a very broad range, including suicides, homicides, drug overdoses, severe mental stress, and most importantly many deaths resulting from abnormally poor health care.
And very recently the remarks of one insurance industry executive have caused more than normal speculations about excess deaths. The head of the OneAmerica insurance company in Pennsylvania said the death rate is up a stunning 40% from pre-pandemic levels among working-age people. “We are seeing, right now, the highest death rates we have seen in the history of this business – not just at OneAmerica,” the company’s CEO Scott Davison said. “The data is consistent across every player in that business.” He said the increase in deaths represents “huge, huge numbers,” and that’s it’s not elderly people who are dying, but “primarily working-age people 18 to 64. And what we saw just in third quarter, we’re seeing it continue into fourth quarter, is that death rates are up 40% over what they were pre-pandemic,” he said.
Most of the claims for deaths being filed are not classified as COVID-19 deaths, Davison said. “What the data is showing to us is that the deaths that are being reported as COVID deaths greatly understate the actual death losses among working-age people from the pandemic. It may not all be COVID on their death certificate, but deaths are up just huge, huge numbers.”
Note that he did not give actual death numbers. All his comments are consistent with the category of collateral deaths. And they are also consistent with the undisputed fact that CDC counts deaths related to COVID as COVID deaths, including people who have died from many causes but only have a positive COVID test before or after death.
This author has found an obscure largely ignored CDC website with excellent up-to-date death data for the two pandemic years of 2020 and 2021.
Be prepared for some serious number crunching.
Here are some ways of understanding and using these data.
First, note that there were many more COVID death in 2021 when there was wide use of vaccines than in the first year of 2020 before vaccines were used.
Second, COVID deaths can be subtracted from all cause deaths; doing these yields 2,829,201 for 2021 and 3,003,658 for 2020. These are non-COVID deaths.
Third, using the figures for all cause deaths and the percent of expected deaths calculate the number of deaths before excess deaths; that is 15% excess for 2021 and 19% excess for 2020. This yields 2,847,788 for 2021 and 2,847,982 for 2020. These are deaths pre-excess deaths. One might expect to add COVID deaths to these figures and get the total death figure; but for 2021 this yields 3,283,543 and 3,233,423 for 2020.
These are clearly not quite the same as the total death figure of 3,274,956 for 2021 and 3,389,099 for 2020. The answer is possibly that CDC has not gotten the excess percent deaths of 19% and 15% perfectly correct for those years because of some rounding of numbers.
Has CDC missed something?
It seems that CDC has not accurately accounted for all non-COVID deaths, especially collateral deaths. One possible explanation is that many collateral deaths have been included in COVID deaths, because the latter includes so many deaths of people WITH but not FROM COVID infection.
A clue that this is the case is considering the last column of data above, namely deaths involving COVID and pneumonia, these are significantly lower than the deaths INVOLVING COVID. This combination likely is a good surrogate for seriously ill (and mostly) hospitalized patients. These could be viewed as the REAL COVID deaths, that is deaths actually FROM COVID, not just related to COVID possibly after death caused by various other things.
If we subtract the COVID and pneumonia deaths from the COVID involved deaths, then we get these figures for 2021 and 2020: 189,737 and 205,452, respectively. These figures are good indicators of collateral and possibly vaccine deaths for those years. And those add up to nearly a 400,000-death level for both pandemic years, which seem quite reasonable.
The above analysis is given as an alternative to many speculations about US excess deaths during the pandemic.
It is reasonable to believe that CDC knows the real figures for total deaths from all causes, the levels of excess deaths of 15% and 19% for the two pandemic years, and they keep the official data on COVID related deaths.
It is reasonable to come to a conclusion of about 400,000 non-COVID deaths for the two pandemic years, defined as collateral deaths and even including some vaccine deaths (though many of these might be in the COVID-related category because of positive tests).