For most of 2020, deaths among long-term care residents were the majority of all deaths in Minnesota. With widespread early vaccinations of these persons, their proportion of all deaths decreased substantially. If vaccine effectiveness is lessening, we would expect that proportion to tick back up. Below are updates of Dave Dixon’s charts on this topic, and you can see that this really hasn’t occurred to a great degree, which is another testament to the vaccines’ effectiveness at preventing death. On the other hand, it may also be that the pool of extremely frail and vulnerable LTC residents was greatly exhausted in the earlier stages of the epidemic.
1. Residence type for Covid deaths are listed on the Minnesota Situation Update for COVID-19 web page: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/situation.html
Although on this page there is a data table for date of death, the residence type is not listed in a date of death data table. Residence type is therefore based on date of report, and the actual death may have occurred several days or weeks before the report.
2. Residence type is tabulated daily, concerted to a 7 day running average, and then plotted.
On March 9, 2021 (credited to the previous day 3/08/2021) MDH released the results of an audit, reporting 891 cases and 138 deaths that had occurred over the past year but had not been reported. 140 total deaths were reported on 3/9/2021, of which 138 were Long Term Care residents. The 891 additional cases were equally apportioned to PCR cases back to the start of the pandemic, in proportion to previously reported cases. LTC deaths were added to the LTC care in proportion to the 891 cases, at the rate of 1 additional LTC death every 6.5 additional case. In this manner the 138 additional LTC deaths were added to the LTC death total over the entirety of the pandemic.