House Oversight Committee Chairman Steve Johnson (R-Wayland) today said an update from the Office of the Auditor General on unreported COVID-19 deaths due to COVID-19 creates more questions going forward.
The Auditor General has found approximately 800 additional confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths overall across the state from Jan. 1, 2020 through July 3, 2021. The Auditor General responded to a request from the Oversight Committee to look into the accuracy of DHHS’ data of COVID-19 deaths in long-term care facilities. The Auditor General told Johnson it used death certificate information from the Electronic Death Record System and COVID-19 case and death data from the Michigan Disease Surveillance System (MDSS). The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services counts total COVID-19 deaths on their pandemic website using data from MDSS.
The Auditor General will use the results of their analysis of overall COVID-19 deaths and other State databases to now determine the true number of long-term care facility deaths due to COVID-19. The Oversight Committee has fought for more accurate data as they assess the ramifications of Gov. Whitmer’s disastrous policy to place COVID-positive patients into nursing homes amongst the most vulnerable.
“The people of Michigan deserve to know the true cost of Governor Whitmer’s disastrous policy of placing COVID-positive patients into nursing homes,” Johnson said. “The Oversight Committee is intent on getting accurate data from an unbiased non-partisan source such as the Auditor General. Many people throughout the state have lost loved ones in nursing homes. While they were prohibited from visiting their loved ones, Gov. Whitmer was placing COVID-positive patients in these same facilities that were closed off to the families. We’ve seen in other states, like New York, where nursing home deaths were vastly underreported. I want to see if that is the case here, and I support the Auditor General’s ongoing work to get to the bottom of this.”
Johnson said the Auditor General’s final report is estimated to be completed by late November or early December.
House Oversight Committee chairman Rep. Steve Johnson talks about Thursday’s meeting, where members heard from the families of people who died in Michigan nursing homes during the early weeks of the COVID pandemic. Rep. Johnson says Thursday’s meeting underscores the reality that decisions made by the administration impacted people.
House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Steve Johnson talks about the committee’s meeting Thursday, when members will hear from officials from the Michigan Auditor General’s office about a state undercount of COVID-related nursing home deaths.
House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Steve Johnson talks about Thursday’s meeting with officials from the Michigan Auditor General’s office and Department of Health and Human Services Director Elizabeth Hertel on COVID deaths in nursing homes during the pandemic. Rep. Johnson says a recent Auditor General’s report and testimony Thursday makes him think that the state […]
House Oversight Committee Chairman Steve Johnson discusses the upcoming release of the Michigan Auditor General’s report into COVID-19 long-term care facility deaths in Michigan. The state’s Department of Health acknowledged in a letter that a previous total of COVID-19 long-term care facility deaths is 30 percent lower than what the Auditor General found.