About that comment in Michigan from the president earlier where he slammed doctors with a false implication that they are fiddling the numbers and profiting from coronavirus deaths, and his repeated, misleading messages about data, my health reporter colleague, Jessica Glenza, has this clarity:
Donald Trump has – again – falsely claimed the United States is over-counting the number of people who have died of Covid-19. In fact, the United States is likely under-counting deaths.
“You know, in Germany, if you have a bad heart and you’re ready to die, or if you have cancer and you’re going to be dying soon, and you catch Covid that happens, we mark it down to Covid. Our doctors get more money if somebody dies of Covid,” Trump said. He continued: “With us, when in doubt choose Covid.”
Multiple studies have shown the US is almost certainly under-counting the true toll of Covid-19. Scientists studying population health measure the impact of pandemics, such as Covid-19 and the 1918 Spanish flu, by comparing expected deaths against actual deaths.