Report: Out-of-hospital deaths from non-COVID causes jumped at the beginning of pandemic

Many have died from preventable causes because they were afraid to go to the hospital.

As coronavirus raged through the state this spring, deaths outside of hospitals from non-coronavirus causes jumped 62%, according the state health department.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services reviewed data from March 15 and May 23 and found a stark contrast from data from the same period in 2019.

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Among the things they discovered, out-of-hospital heart attacks jumped 43% from a year earlier. At the same time, ambulance rides for people suffering cardiac arrest dropped 10%.

The decrease in emergency room visits is continuing, according to hospital officials interviewed by Bridge Magazine. And the trend isn’t unique to Michigan.

A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that ER visits dropped by 42% during the early months of the pandemic.

Public health officials insist hospitals are safe. Facilities are sanitized frequently and all staff are required to wear face coverings and other protective equipment.

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