This could be especially true because the reporting data can lag by an average of one to two weeks, according to the latest guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s.

Also, deaths due to Covid-19 “may be misclassified as pneumonia deaths in the absence of positive test results, and pneumonia may appear on death certificates as a comorbid condition,” the CDC noted, adding that “analyses to better understand and quantify reporting delays” for Covid-19 deaths and “related causes” are underway. In March, the CDC introduced a new code to accurately capture mortality due to Covid-19 on death certificates.

With that code, the CDC noted that Covid-19 “should be reported on the death certificate for all decedents where the disease caused or is assumed to have caused or contributed to death.”