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LTC Cases

By May 10, 2021Commentary

In my communications with Dr. Osterholm, one thing he said was that LTC cases in Minnesota were rising, among staff primarily but he was concerned about spread to residents.  That didn’t sound right to me based on looking at the weekly reports, which have data on LTC cases, separated by staff and residents.  DD did his usual sterling work to verify that there doesn’t appear to be a trend at all in recent weeks.  But he also noted a number of data issues.  I am not really shocked that in an area where they claim to have so much focus, the data is so poor, because by now it just confirms my hardened opinion of complete ineptitude at the department of health.   The charts tell the story.  Note that the spike in the 3/11 week is the case and death dump from March 8.   Here are DD’s data observations:

1.  I think the cumulative cases listed on many of the reports are wrong. The weekly cases I calculate by taking the difference of the consecutive cumulative cases listed on Page 39 looks nothing like the bar chart of weekly cases on Page 39. See the first page of my attached chart. The cumulative cases listed on the reports for 12-17 and 12-24 are identical, for example.
2.  Regardless of the apparent inconsistency on the weekly cases, I then calculated the proportion of LTC staff and residents cases of the total weekly cases.
3.  There is a difference in the definition of the weeks for total cases, and for LTC staff and residents cases. For example, in last Thursday’s weekly report the overall cases on Page 22 are stated as being complete as of 4 pm on 5/5/2021 (Wednesday). However, the congregate case cases on Page 39 are defined as being from 4/25 to 5/1, so offset by 4 days.
4.  The proportions on the second sheet of my PowerPoint seem to be decreasing over time, ignoring the spikes in the data. This is what we would expect as congregate care staff and residents should have been some of the earliest people vaccinated.
5.  The cumulative cases on Page 39 are only listed as far back as 9/3/20.



Join the discussion One Comment

  • Douglas Kraus says:

    I wonder if Dr. Osterholm is surprised that people are looking at the data, rather than his distorted synopsis.

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