By Jack Davis
A new report from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that in 94 percent of the cases of those who died from COVID-19, another condition — in most cases likely brought on or exacerbated by the presence of the COVID virus — was also at work on the victim.
“For 6% of the deaths, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned,” the CDC stated in its report, under the heading “Comorbidities.”
“For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to COVID-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death,” the report continued.
The report showed that in 18,116 of 42,587 deaths in the 75-84 age group, the individual who died also had the flu or pneumonia, while in 15,100 cases the underlying condition was respiratory failure.
Overall, of the 161,392 deaths covered by the report, 42 percent (68,004) of those who died also had the flu or pneumonia while 34 percent (54,803) had an underlying condition of respiratory failure.
It is important to note that, as COVID-19 has no direct fatality method, no deaths are caused directly by the virus itself. This is not the same, however, as saying that COVID-19 did not “trigger the series of events leading to the patient’s death. In many cases patients with comorbidities would not have died at that time,” according to Science Feedback.
— CDC (@CDCgov) August 18, 2020
Diabetes was an underlying condition in 16 percent of the deaths (25,936 people) while various heart-related conditions including cardiac arrest, ischemic heart disease (also known as hardening of the arteries), cardiac arrhythmia and heart disease (58,687 people) were found in 36 percent of those who died.
In June, the CDC listed as high-risk individuals for COVID-19 those who had chronic kidney disease; COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease); obesity (BMI of 30 or higher); immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant; serious heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies; sickle cell disease; Type 2 diabetes.
Although the CDC’s initial guidance suggested those over 65 were at high risk, the CDC later revised that to note than risk increases with age and that there is no single age at which risk suddenly rises.
In comments released at the time, CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said risk “is a continuum.”
If you have certain underlying medical conditions, you are at increased risk of severe illness from #COVID19, no matter your age. Find tips to protect yourself: https://t.co/0go5iZGIQf pic.twitter.com/hPJRXRUYbY
— CDC (@CDCgov) June 29, 2020
“Based on what we’ve learned, we now understand that as you get older, your risk for severe disease, hospitalization, and death increases. We also updated the list of underlying health conditions that can put you at higher risk for severe disease, hospitalization, and death, based on the latest review of scientific evidence to date,” he said.
“A key point is that we want to make sure that people know that as your numbers of underlying medical conditions increase, your risk of severe illness from COVID also increases,” he said.
As of Sunday, 843,826 people had been reported as killed by the virus, with 182,909 of those being Americans.
Spread of the disease resulted in mass lockdowns across the country.
Risk is one of the factors that will go into distributing COVID-19 vaccines once those that are now in trials are ready for the market, according to CNBC.
“At first, there will likely be a limited supply of one or more of the Covid-19 vaccines, because limited doses will be available,” Redfield said Friday, CNBC reported. “It’s important that the early vaccines are distributed in a fair, ethical and transparent way.”
The list of those to be vaccinated will include health care workers, those considered essential workers at the time a vaccine is ready for distribution, and those considered at high risk due to age and underlying health conditions, according to the CDC.
CORRECTION, Sept. 16, 2020: The Western Journal has made several corrections to this article for clarity. The title has been changed from “CDC Now Says 94% of COVID Deaths Had an Underlying Condition” to “CDC Says ‘Comorbidities’ Present in 94% of COVID Deaths” to remove the implication that all such “underlying” conditions were pre-existing, rather than a result of the COVID infection, which they certainly were in many cases. We also revised wording in the first sentence that may have implied the same idea to some readers. Finally, we have added language to make it clear that the presence of comorbidities in a COVID patient does not imply, and certainly does not mean, that the patient’s death was not a direct result of COVID-19 infection.