CDC finds additional 5,000 NYC deaths possibly linked to coronavirus

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Medical workers wheel a deceased patient on a stretcher behind a privacy screen at the Brooklyn Hospital Center on April 27, 2020 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.

Stephanie Keith | Getty Images

U.S. health officials have identified 5,000 additional deaths in New York City between March and early May that may have been caused by the coronavirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Monday.

New York City health officials reported 18,879 total Covid-19 deaths between March 11 and May 2, — 13,831 of which were confirmed by a lab and 5,048 of which were categorized as probable cases based on the patients’ symptoms and other factors, according to a new CDC report.

There were an additional 5,293 deaths that weren’t previously identified as confirmed or probable coronavirus cases, the CDC said, adding that they “might have been directly or indirectly attributable to the pandemic.”

The number of confirmed or probable Covid-19 deaths might not include deaths among people with the virus “who did not access diagnostic testing, tested falsely negative, or became infected after testing negative, died outside of a health care setting, or for whom Covid-19 was not suspected by a health care provider as a cause of death,” the CDC wrote.

New York City is the epicenter of the outbreak in the United States. Since New York City reported its first case on March 1, there have been more than 184,000 cases and at least 19,789 people have died in the city, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. U.S. health officials have suggested the true number of cases and deaths is likely much as some people infected with the virus go undetected.

The CDC said excess deaths were determined using mortality data compiled by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and calculated as the difference between the seasonally expected baseline number and the reported number of deaths.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates. 

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