New Study Highlights Alleged Accounting Error Regarding Covid Deaths

At the time of this writing, the United States currently maintains the highest number of Covid-19 deaths and ranks 11th for the highest deaths per capita. There have been approximately 262,000 recorded Covid-19 deaths in the United States, which is certainly a concerning number.

However, a new study (link removed or site crashed but now available at published by Dr. Genevieve Briand at Johns Hopkins University notes some critical accounting errors done at the national level. The study – which is still being vetted – simply examines the raw data that should have been questioned months ago. The overall conclusion is that Covid-19, at least according to collected data, is not the killer disease that it is currently hyped up to be. AIER is not endorsing the study as is without further study, but we are interested in the argument being examined and discussed.

Viewing Covid-19 Deaths in Context

It is already well established that Covid-19 is a disease that is most dangerous to those over the age of 65 and who have preexisting conditions. In the United States, there has been an observed 2.1% mortality rate, with elderly individuals making up over half that number.

Young and healthy people are not by any significant capacity threatened by Covid-19.

One of the most important factors when it comes to Covid-19 is preventing excess death. According to the CDC,

“Estimates of excess deaths can provide information about the burden of mortality potentially related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including deaths that are directly or indirectly attributed to COVID-19. Excess deaths are typically defined as the difference between the observed numbers of deaths in specific time periods and expected numbers of deaths in the same time periods.”

Essentially, there is an average number of deaths every year due to a variety of causes that for the most part have remained constant through the years. This includes morbidities such as heart disease, which has long been the leading cause of death, and cancer, which has long plagued our existence. For Covid-19 to be a serious cause of alarm, it would need to significantly increase the number of average deaths.

However, according to the study,

“These data analyses suggest that in contrast to most people’s assumptions, the number of deaths by COVID-19 is not alarming. In fact, it has relatively no effect on deaths in the United States .”

Total deaths in the United States show no significant change and even mirror past trends of seasonal illness.

Source: CDC Data, Methodology Included in this Video

According to this graph constructed using data provided by the CDC from the last 6 years, total deaths have remained relatively constant and increases can be explained by various factors such as a larger population. The spikes in deaths in 2020 are consistent with historical trends, only topping 2018 by 11,292 deaths. There have been over 262,000 deaths attributed to Covid-19 in the United States, yet total deaths have not increased in any alarming capacity; they have only mirrored existing trends. In short, according to 6 years of data collected by the CDC, Covid-19 has not led to any significant increase in deaths.

Diving Deeper

What is even more interesting if not more alarming is that the spike in recorded Covid-19 deaths seen in 2020 has coincided with a proportional decrease in death from other diseases.

Yanni Gu writes

“This suggests, according to Briand, that the COVID-19 death toll is misleading. Briand believes that deaths due to heart diseases, respiratory diseases, influenza and pneumonia may instead be recategorized as being due to COVID-19.”

Deaths have remained relatively constant, yet reported deaths due to deadly conditions such as heart disease have fallen while reported Covid deaths have risen. This suggests that the current Covid death count is in some capacity relabeled deaths due to other ailments. According to the graph, reported Covid deaths even overtook heart disease as the main cause of death at one point, which should raise suspicion.

This aligns with many other well-established facts about the virus, such as those with comorbidities are the most at risk. According to the CDC, about 94% of Covid deaths occur with comorbidities. This suggests that it could be possible that a large number of deaths could have been mainly due to more serious ailments such as heart disease but categorized as a Covid-19 death, a far less lethal disease.

Source: John Hopkins News-Letter, provided by Genevieve Briand

According to this graph provided by the study, deaths labeled under Covid-19 increased while deaths labeled under others decreased. It is important to note that this sample only applies to the month of April as the author notes these were the weeks with the highest reported deaths. Gu writes

“The CDC classified all deaths that are related to COVID-19 simply as COVID-19 deaths. Even patients dying from other underlying diseases but are infected with COVID-19 count as COVID-19 deaths. This is likely the main explanation as to why COVID-19 deaths drastically increased while deaths by all other diseases experienced a significant decrease…

“If [the COVID-19 death toll] was not misleading at all, what we should have observed is an increased number of heart attacks and increased COVID-19 numbers . But a decreased number of heart attacks and all the other death causes doesn’t give us a choice but to point to some misclassification,” Briand replied.”

Furthermore, Briand’s research notes that the percentage of death has remained relatively constant through all age groups. Covid death statistics seem to mirror the normal distribution of death amongst age groups, further lending credence to the argument that many Covid deaths are recategorized deaths.

Briand provides this graph constructed from CDC data that shows that deaths amongst various age groups have remained relatively constant.

By simply looking at the raw data presented by the CDC Gu writes that

“All of this points to no evidence that COVID-19 created any excess deaths. Total death numbers are not above normal death numbers. We found no evidence to the contrary,” Briand concluded.

What Do We Do With This Information?

Briand and likely many others suppose that the extreme emphasis on Covid-19 has led to the unintended classification of the disease as the cause of death. She further stresses that although this data challenges the idea that Covid is an unprecedented and lethal disease, we should still be concerned with mitigating death in general.

However, it is clear that this significant accounting error regarding Covid deaths, if true, is not productive. It has caused mass hysteria and misinformed public policy. Closing down communities to fight a virus that according to the data, has had no significant contribution to total deaths, reduces our overall capacity to build a healthy society.

Lockdowns have resulted in severe damage to our capacity to improve the general health of society. From the catastrophic economic damage that lowers the standard of living for everyone to surgeries being deemed “unessential,” our current policies are not helping in preventing deaths in general; they are likely leading to more. Suicides and substance abuse are up, mental and physical health are down, all due to lockdowns.

The late Dr. Donald Henderson, who led the eradication of smallpox, noted in 2006 that

“Experience has shown that communities faced with epidemics or other adverse events respond best and with the least anxiety when the normal social functioning of the community is least disrupted.”

The hysteria over Covid-19 has likely led to the alleged accounting error noted in Briand’s study, the reclassification of expected deaths from all causes into Covid deaths. That accounting error has likely led to a number of policy decisions that have drastically crippled our ability to support the general welfare of society, economically, socially, and spiritually. Going forward these findings should give us pause and reconsideration over the threat Covid-19 actually poses and realize how much avoidable damage we have done to ourselves as a result.

People have been saying this from the beginning. There is an obvious difference between someone dying from COVID and someone dying with COVID.

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And the study attached reveals the reality tha a person dying from heart issues would have likely died with or without the corona virus.

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That about sums it up.

I find it highly annoying that the left is manipulating the data for power.

I find it disturbing that people are allowing it.


Right. This is an exercise to see how hard and how far they can push us. Apparently, they can push us as hard and as far as they want.

I’ve seen more footage of anti-lockdown protests in the UK than I’ve seen in the US.

As a matter of fact, they are protesting right now.


The boiling frog analogy.

I think they’ve (UK) finally had enough and are jumping out of the pot.

Too many in the US are still thinking they are in a relaxing spa.


Damn! Those cops are throwing beatdowns on people for not wearing their masks.

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More info released:

Covid-19: Can the Official Death Toll be Believed?

![Patrick D Hahn image]

On Wednesday November 11, 2020, a mild-mannered professor gave a PowerPoint presentation – and touched off a firestorm of controversy.

Dr. Genevieve Briand is the Assistant Program Director and Senior Lecturer in Applied Economics at the Johns Hopkins University Advanced Academic Programs. (Disclosure: I am a 2016 graduate of the Science Writing Program of the AAP.) Her talk is available on YouTube here. Briand looked at data from the CDC website on both Covid-19 deaths and total deaths from 2014 forwards, and while she stressed that her analysis was still a work in progress, her findings were nothing short of astonishing.

Deaths from heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, diabetes, influenza, nephritis, and septicemia all decreased– by an amount almost exactly equal to the increase in covid deaths .

Dr. Briand began by pointing out that we cannot assess the effect of Covid-19 by looking only at Covid-19 deaths. Rather, the death toll attributed to Covid-19 must be assessed in the context of deaths from all causes. Towards that end, Briand converted the CDC data to graphical form, and some interesting trends emerged.

The first was that the percent of deaths per age category did not change. There was no increase in the percentage of deaths in those over the age of 85, nor in the 75-84 age group, nor in the 65-74 age group. This seems a bit odd, since the risk of dying from the covid is known to increase dramatically with age.

The second was that during the three-week peak period for Covid-19 deaths, i.e., the weeks ending April 11 through April 25, while mortality from Covid-19 went up, that of every other cause went down. Deaths from heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, diabetes, influenza, nephritis, and septicemia all decreased– by an amount almost exactly equal to the increase in covid deaths .

Dr. Briand’s conclusion was straightforward: “All this points to no evidence that Covid-19 created any excess deaths.”

In plain English, most of the people who are said to have died of the covid would have died anyway.

COVID-19 has had relatively no effect on the total number of deaths in the United States

Like most academic presentations, Dr. Briand’s talk attracted little attention – at first. All this changed on 22 November when the Johns Hopkins News-Letter published an article by Staff Writer Yanni Gu about Dr. Briand’s work. Some highlights from the article follow:

Not only has COVID-19 had no effect on the percentage of deaths in older people, but it has also not increased the total number of deaths.

In contrast to most people’s assumptions, the number of deaths by COVID-19 is not alarming.

In fact, it has had relatively no effect on the total number of deaths in the United States.

Four days later, the News-Letter posted the following announcements on Twitter:

The article “A closer look at U.S. deaths due to COVID-19,” published in the Science & Technology section on Nov. 22, has been deleted.

We regret this article may have contributed to the spread of misinformation about COVID-19.

The retraction didn’t even try to claim the original article contained any factual errors

The following day, the News-Letter posted a—retraction, which began with these words:

After the News-Letter published this article on Nov. 22, it was brought to our attention that our coverage of Genevieve Briand’s presentation “COVID-19 Deaths: A Look at U.S. Data” has been used to support dangerous inaccuracies that minimize the impact of the pandemic.

The staff of the News-Letter deleted the original article from their website, although to their credit they have made it available as a pdf here.

The retraction didn’t even try to claim the original article contained any factual errors, nor did it explain what sorts of “dangerous inaccuracies” it had been used to support, but instead responded with a mixture of defensive posturing, ad hominem attacks against Dr. Briand, and question begging:

The News-Letter is an editorially and financially independent, student-run publication. Our articles are not endorsed by the University or the School of Medicine, and our decision to retract the article was made independently.

Briand is neither a medical professional nor a disease researcher.

According the CDC, there have been almost 300,000 excess deaths due to COVID-19.

It does not address the question of how many of these would have died anyway

That last statement is not supported by the CDC website, which as of 26 December reports a figure of 329,000 total deaths. It does not address the question of how many of these would have died anyway.

The retraction goes on to tell us that “COVID-19 disproportionately affects those with preexisting conditions, so those with those underlying conditions are statistically more likely to be severely affected and die from the virus” – ignoring the fact that those with underlying conditions are also statistically more likely to die as a result of those conditions, and again begging the question of how many of the deaths attributed to the covid would have occurred anyway.

This matter takes on a special urgency when you realize that, according to the CDC, only six percent of recorded covid deaths had no other complicating medical condition.

As for Dr. Briand, she wound up her talk by noting that at the dawn of the Twentieth Century, U.S. life expectancy was forty-nine years, whereas now it has surpassed seventy-eight years, and concluded with these words:

Family and friends mourn the passing of their loved ones, no matter their ages. And the passing of a loved one can be for some devastating. Nonetheless, as a society the passing of older individuals should not be something we should dread or fear, but instead celebrate. Long lives lived are something to be grateful for.

Indeed. Meanwhile, Dr. Briand’s talk has garnered 87,000 views. For calibration, none of the other talks featured on the AAP’s YouTube channel have gotten more than 200. No doubt the pdf copy of the News-Letter article by Yanni Gu has also reached far more readers than it would have in the absence of the controversy. So the efforts to squelch Briand’s finding seem to have backfired in a big way. That’s also something to be grateful for.

What makes you think that it’s “the left”…:thinking:

One has to wonder why Trump’s CDC would be intentionally deceptive with Americans regarding Covid/Covid deaths…:thinking:

If you look at the most restrictive states, they are run by democrats that are more left than center.

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But you said democrats are manipulating data for power. You have no evidence of that.

There has been quite a bit of doubt cast on the Dominion system regardless if a court takes the cases or not.

We go back to (or I do) what the left did to Kavenaugh and to Trump with the Russian collusion antics.

Go back to Obamacare, “you have to pass the bill before you can see what’s in it”.

When I see what the left had pulled, it puts me in the corner of having doubt and rightly so.

I cannot prove it, but common sense tells me Biden could never have won this election. He isn’t that popular more relevant is he is IMO unfit for office.

Harris had very little support with the democrats and with the left. She is second in line.

Chances are very good Biden can’t make it through his term.

Even given no fraud, is Biden or Harris worth it?

What did Trump do to light everyone’s pants on fire? Improve the economy? Curb illegal migration so jobs were so scarce they had to hire Americans over illegals?

I think folks like you © and me © have a very different opinion on where this country should go. I see success in America first. I think folks like you © see blending in, no exceptionalism as a good thing.

It isn’t.

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Yes, Trump cast doubts, he cast the same doubts in the 2016 election. In fact he was so sure then that he assembled a committee to investigate and prosecute the fraud. After a year, the committee disbanded without even producing a report, so scarce was any evidence.

60 courts have dismissed his frivolous suits, and Dominion is pushing back legally.

You don’t like what the left did to Kavanaugh but don’t care what the right did to Garland.

All bills have to be passed in order to know what’s in them. That’s the disastrous way congress R&D does business these days. Same for the bill Trump just signed.

Biden wasn’t that popular, you’re right. But it wasn’t about his popularity, it was about disdain for Trump. According to exit polling, 40% of Biden voters were voting against Trump.

You think Biden isn’t fit for office, Americans largely believe that Trump isn’t. And not just amongst democrats.

Not all Americans think an economy buoyed by debt is a good thing. Being a Trump supporter you probably don’t like to think about it but Trump made a huge stink about the debt that Obama racked up. But he pledged to pay off the 19.8 trillion he inherited and promised to operate balanced budgets which he bragged was easy for a savvy businessman such as himself. Take a look at it now, it’s crowding 28 trillion and he has signed 3 RECORD budget deficits.

The economy has been in the shitter all year, unemployment is at 10% and despite the hypocrites demands that I hire Americans and buy American, his brands are made overseas and his properties here are staffed with visa holding foreigners, NOT Americans.

I think we’re both America firsters with differing opinions on how we go there.

How sad. Trump, like him or not did a whole hell of a lot to bring Americans back to prosperity

Trump is very much more fit for office than Biden. The issue is he is reversing the regressive agenda.

I support the policies, not the man. I can separate the two.

I’m glad I live in Florida. Yes, my Governor has made some good decisions so the economy here isn’t in the shitter.

I find it quite simple. Put Americans first. Put America first.


Yep, as predicted you completely ignored the fact that trump has strapped America with record debt and deficit…and not a peep about 10% unemployment…

81 million Americans say Biden is more fit for the high office than Trump…:wink:

Joe Biden will be sworn in on January 20th as the 46th president of the United States…:us::us::us::us:

Of course JB will be the 46th.

As to the rest? Seriously? What would you have anyone as President do when governors are shutting their economies down?

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Trump has signed THREE RECORD budget deficits. He was borrowing and spending like a drunken sailor long before Covid. This is one reason for the repudiation of him and his policies. He has been denied a second term because he’s a liar and a looser…so your opinion of him is moot, by a 7 million vote margin he has been rejected by America…


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No governors have shut their economies down, not a single one. :man_shrugging: