September Death Reconciliations in Kansas

Joy Eakins and Chris Wyant Cornerstone Data share their data analytics with a client.
Know your Numbers Death Date COVID chart showcases the power of decision intelligence.

Now that September is over, we can see the effect of KDHE’s death reconciliation process. In total, 231 deaths were added to the records in the month of September, representing more than 1/3 of all deaths since reporting began. The earliest date of death recorded in the reconciliation was the week of May 10.

In the graph above, the values in yellow indicate which deaths were added in the month of September and when they were added. For example, you can see here that in September one death was added the week of May 10 and 5 were added the week of July 12.

To date the peak of deaths was the week of August 23 with 51 reported that week. Since then, the number of deaths by date have declined – though we may see more added when new adjustments are made. You can see more details in our complete analysis here: COVID Death Date Analysis.

KDHE explains their process for counting and reporting deaths this way:

KDHE has two processes for verifying COVID-19 related deaths. Notifications of deaths in COVID-19 patients may be reported directly to KDHE by local health departments or providers and are marked in our disease surveillance system. When the death certificate is received by the KDHE Office of Vital Statistics, we verify the cause of death and date of death in our our surveillance system. In the second process, we regularly review COVID-19 deaths in the death registration system and update any COVID-19 deaths missing in the surveillance system. In both processes, the death certificate data is the final source of data. Therefore, the number of deaths reported here by date of death may not match the total number of deaths reported if the date of death has not been verified yet from the death certificate.