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50 States of New Actual-To-Expected Death Data

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Related: 5 Worst States for COVID-19 Mortality Change Now

For now, the U.S. death counts for mid-September look good — because they’re probably incomplete.

Analysts are showing that the total number of U.S. deaths fell to 50,299 for the week ending Sept. 18, down from 65 465 for the week ending Aug. 21, and that the number of people listed as dying from COVID-19 fell to 9,929, from 11,476.

The ratio of actual deaths to “expected deaths” fell to 101% in the typical state, from 125% a month earlier,

But one other key statistic went in a bad direction: the percentage of all deaths attributed to COVID-19.

That percentage increased to 15.8% on Sept. 18, down from 11.6% a month earlier.

In seven states, the percentage of deaths attributed to the pandemic jumped 10 percentage points or more between August and September.

That might be a sign that overall COVID-19 mortality also jumped in September, and that any apparent easing of pandemic intensity has to do with data reporting problems, rather than a real decrease in pandemic intensity.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic came along, a factor that increased the ratio of the actual number of deaths to the expected number by more than 1% for more than a few weeks would have been considered noteworthy.

Increased mortality can have the biggest immediate impact on life, health and annuity issuers by increasing life insurance death benefits payouts, and by decreasing pension and long-term care insurance benfits obligations. Increased mortality may also decrease individual annuity obligations, but that effect tends to be relatively small, because many contracts offer death-related benefits.

For a look at the five states where the percentage of deaths attributed to COVID-19 increased the most, see the slideshow above.

For a look at data for all 50 states and the District of Columbia, see the chart below.

— Related on ThinkAdvisor:

Total Deaths, COVID-19 Deaths and the Percentage of All Deaths Caused by COVID-19

Jurisdiction COVID-19 Deaths Total Deaths Ratio of Actual Deaths to Expected Percentage of Total Deaths Caused by COVID-19 COVID-19 Deaths Total Deaths Ratio of Actual Deaths to Expected Percentage of Total Deaths Caused by COVID-19 Change in the Percentage of Deaths Caused by COVID-19, in percentage points
(Week ending Aug. 21) (Week ending Sept. 18)
Alabama 404 1,492 157% 27.1% 343 1,074 112% 31.9% 4.9
Alaska 20 113 125% 17.7% NA 25 31% NA NA
Arizona 172 1,478 145% 11.6% 213 1,335 126% 16.0% 4.3
Arkansas 224 834 147% 26.9% 134 685 111% 19.6% -7.3
California 798 6,125 130% 13.0% 639 4,109 87% 15.6% 2.5
Colorado 84 907 129% 9.3% 87 771 105% 11.3% 2.0
Connecticut 21 488 90% 4.3% 13 114 20% 11.4% 7.1
Delaware 19 210 125% 9.0% 30 148 88% 20.3% 11.2
District of Columbia 13 114 99% 11.4% NA 40 35% NA NA
Florida 2,579 7,094 193% 36.4% 1,504 4,855 127% 31.0% -5.4
Georgia 645 2,263 142% 28.5% 501 1,483 94% 33.8% 5.3
Hawaii 32 298 144% 10.7% 27 183 77% 14.8% 4.0
Idaho 45 341 139% 13.2% 119 377 146% 31.6% 18.4
Illinois 198 2,250 121% 8.8% 238 2,000 101% 11.9% 3.1
Indiana 159 1,405 118% 11.3% 197 999 83% 19.7% 8.4
Iowa 47 620 120% 7.6% 80 526 96% 15.2% 7.6
Kansas 85 619 133% 13.7% 83 538 113% 15.4% 1.7
Kentucky 199 1,073 125% 18.5% 232 725 81% 32.0% 13.5
Louisiana 374 1,162 138% 32.2% 135 535 61% 25.2% -7.0
Maine 10 306 114% 3.3% 28 317 116%5 8.8% 5.6
Maryland 57 929 102% 6.1% 105 962 107% 10.9% 4.8
Massachusetts 34 1,118 106% 3.0% 64 1,051 98% 6.1% 3.0_
Michigan 109 2,021 115% 5.4% 170 1,778 101% 9.6% 4.2
Minnesota 32 830 105% 3.9% 75 758 92% 9.9% 6.0
Mississippi 310 940 166% 33.0% 185 703 119% 26.3% -6.7
Missouri 296 1,498 127% 19.8% 205 1,109 94% 18.5% -1.3
Montana 46 270 147% 17.0% 48 254 137% 18.9% 1.9
Nebraska 38 333 109% 11.4% 25 216 69% 11.6% 0.2
Nevada 177 693 152% 25.5% 128 508 109% 25.2% -0.3
New Hampshire NA 255 111% NA 14 273 116% 5.1% NA
New Jersey 87 1,439 111% 6.0% 118 1,402 106% 8.4% 2.4
New Mexico 48 402 119% 11.9% 43 273 83% 15.8% 3.8
New York 118 1,971 109% 6.0% 209 2,153 122% 9.7% 3.7
New York City 67 1,087 111% 6.2% 66 1,016 104% 6.5% 0.3
North Carolina 333 1,032 60% 32.3% 64 492 29% 13.0% -19.3
North Dakota NA 84 59% NA 10 152 107% 6.6% NA
Ohio 200 2,470 111% 8.1% 275 1,706 74% 16.1% 8.0
Oklahoma 241 1,051 149% 22.9% 170 673 93% 25.3% 2.3
Oregon 142 903 136% 15.7% 129 562 88% 23.0% 7.2
Pennsylvania 129 2,589 108% 5.0% 271 2,562 104% 10.6% 5.6
Puerto Rico 88 546 100% 16.1% 50 236 42% 21.2% 5.1
Rhode Island NA 203 110% NA NA 56 30% NA NA
South Carolina 263 1,319 148% 19.9% 288 922 102% 31.2% 11.3
South Dakota 10 155 105% 6.5% 10 97 63% 10.3% 3.9
Tennessee 360 1,891 145% 19.0% 561 1,708 123% 32.8% 13.8
Texas 1,738 6,045 165% 28.8% 1,276 3,844 104% 33.2% 4.4
Utah 63 462 135% 13.6% 83 459 135% 18.1% 4.4
Vermont NA 119 112% NA NA 119 117% 0.0% NA
Virginia 141 1,582 129% 8.9% 248 1,471 119% 16.9% 7.9
Washington 153 1,311 127% 11.7% 216 974 97% 22.2% 10.5
West Virginia 34 36 9% 94.4% 85 87 21% 97.7% 3.3
Wisconsin 73 1,132 120% 6.4% 136 1,025 103% 13.3% 6.8
Wyoming 15 103 129% 14.6% 32 95 106% 33.7% 19.1

A U.S. Department of Health and Human Services COVID-19 mortality map for the week ending Sept. 23. (Image: State Profile Report/HHS)