Discover more from 1620Today from Jack Gately
What we don’t know about Plymouth’s virus victims
As the bells chimed downtown yesterday for the 128 Plymouth residents that have died to date from COVID-19, there is much we don’t know about the victims.
According to the Town’s website “due to privacy requirements (HIPPA), only general demographics of positive cases will be shared” and consequently the Town only posts age group information for positives cases. But for virus deaths, the Town provides no demographic data. The HIPPA disclaimer indicates that the Town does indeed have the demographic data for deaths, but has decided not to release.
In 2019, the age adjusted death rate was 715 per 100,000. Plymouth has a population of 60,803 with 128 virus deaths since last March. It is possible that the total victim count is actually less, since the state counts virus hospitalizations as patients "with virus" and "for the virus". In other words, a patient could be in the hospital due to a fall from a ladder, test positive for the virus while in the hospital and be counted as a covid hospitalization (potentially a covid death).
Statewide data at the state COVID 19 dashboard does break down deaths by age group.
If the statewide data is applied to Plymouth's 128 deaths, 102 (80%) of Plymouth deaths would be residents 70 years of age or older. And 83 (65%) of Plymouth deaths would be in long term care facilities.