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State’s delayed reporting of COVID-19 deaths causes local confusion

18 new cases, no new deaths in Lincoln County

 

A delay in the reporting of COVID-19 deaths to the state has caused some local confusion.

According to Lincoln County Health Department Director Diane Miller, the eight new deaths in Lincoln County reported by Governor Andy Beshear last week have already been reported locally and were only now included in the state numbers.

“Those numbers are delayed reporting,” Miller said Tuesday.

Miller said in the past there has been a regional epidemiologist who reported the numbers to the state and when he got a new position, there was a lapse in reporting.

“I took the responsibility because it is my responsibility to make sure things are getting reported,” she said.

As far as determining whether a death is COVID-19 related, Miller said that is not a decision the health department makes.

“I don’t determine whether they’re a COVID death or not, that’s under the Department of Public Health. They’ve got a Medical Review team that looks at the death certificate, they look at the medical documentation…,” she said.

As of Tuesday this week Miller said there are no new COVID-19 related deaths to report and there have been a total of 20 deaths, as previously reported. Out of those 20, 17 individuals were residents of the Stanford Care and Rehabilitation facility.

Miller said there are a total of 17 new active COVID-19 cases in Lincoln County as of Tuesday morning. One of those cases is a Stanford Care and Rehabilitation center resident.

“We are monitoring 40 contacts,” she said.

There are three individuals currently hospitalized due to COVID-19. A total of 216 people have been released from quarantine, Miller said.

Additionally, Miller said the health department is strongly urging individuals to get a flu shot as flu season is just around the corner.