Trump on Covid death toll: ‘It is what it is’ | Health/Fitness

By the measure Swan used, the growth in the mortality rate continues to trend upward, while by the measure Trump referenced, the mortality rate decreased between June 17 and July 26 from 5.47% to 3.47%, where it has hovered since, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. It’s not true that “you have to go by the cases,” as Trump claimed, but doing so in this instance allows the President and the White House to support their narrative that the virus is “under control.”

When using the case fatality rate, or “case death,” as Trump called it, to describe the severity of the impact a virus like Covid-19 has on a country, it’s worth noting that a higher testing rate leads to a lower case fatality rate, and the US has significantly increased testing since its case fatality rate peaked in March. Data on deaths overall also tend to lag, so they often don’t reflect the current situation.

On a call with governors Monday afternoon, Birx noted as much, saying: “We do see a probably continuous rise in mortality over the next two weeks, and I think that’s really important for the other states that are in this category to not let your citizens get discouraged that they’re not seeing progress, because you are seeing progress, it’s just the whole site takes about 6-8 weeks to move through that increased test positivity, increased cases and increasing mortality.”

CNN’s Stephen Collinson, Christina Maxouris, Holly Yan and Dakin Andone contributed to this report.

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