Study Admits There Is a Difference Between Hospitalization ‘With’ and ‘For’ COVID-19
For 15 months, the data regarding COVID-19 illness, hospitalizations, and deaths have been suspect. This statement does not mean COVID-19 does not exist or that some people who contracted it did not suffer from severe illness and die from it. However, the prepositions, with, for, and of are critical qualifiers in tracking the actual impacts of COVID-19. A new study from California admits as much.
The reported number of COVID-19 hospitalizations, one of the primary metrics for tracking the severity of the coronavirus pandemic, was grossly inflated for children in California hospitals, two research papers published Wednesday concluded. The papers, both published in the journal Hospital Pediatrics, found that pediatric hospitalizations for COVID-19 were overcounted by at least 40 percent, carrying potential implications for nationwide figures.
Color me shocked. At the beginning of the pandemic, the government and insurers put several policies in place that made sense to determine disease prevalence, which included widespread testing. Hospitals correctly did preemptive testing to determine the correct infection control protocols to use with individual patients. However, other mandates paired this with perverse financial incentives that provided additional funding for COVID-19 care. The original COVID-19 relief package created a 20% premium that included probable cases and laboratory-confirmed cases for Medicare patients. Several large health insurers also waived copays and coinsurance for care related to COVID-19.