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    • jbuchana
      Scribe
      3 weeks ago

      Right-wing politician, Sen. Joni Ernst, about Qanon theory that COVID deaths are deliberately being exaggerated:

      These health-care providers and others are reimbursed at a higher rate if COVID is tied to it. So, what do you think they’re doing?”

      A lot of people who come into my place of employment and want to talk COVID politics have told me this. I mentioned this to a co-worker and she said that her friend was a nurse, and that absolutely, if a death is reported to Medicare as being COVID-related, the hospital is indeed reimbursed at a much higher rate. I didn’t believe her, but fortunately I didn’t say so, since I looked it up on snopes.com (a great fact-checking site if you’ve never been there), and it’s true that hospitals make more money by reporting a death as COVID related even if they just suspect that COVID was involved, they just need a medical opinion, not a positive COVID test. I was floored that this right-wing crazy-sounding conspiracy theory had at least some truth behind it. I assume, that like usual, other insurance companies follow Medicare procedures in this regard, but didn’t look that up.

      she didn’t go as far as QAnon, which is claiming that only 6% of the deaths being attributed to COVID-19 are actually coronavirus-related

      Some sanity, at least.

      while Ernst is “so skeptical” about those numbers, many medical experts believe that Hopkins’ figures undercount the number of coronavirus deaths.

      I do suspect that this is true, but have not researched it:

      In the U.S. and many other countries, the COVID-19-related deaths being reported are typically deaths in hospitals. But when someone dies from COVID-19 at home, that death might be reported as something else — for example, “cardiac arrest.”