Likely already more than 10,000 COVID-19 deaths in NYC

Likely already more than 10,000 COVID-19 deaths in NYC
Posted at 9:07 PM, Apr 14, 2020

NEW YORK — More than 10,000 in New York City have likely died of coronavirus, new data released Tuesday shows.

While there have been 6,589 confirmed COVID-19 deaths, there are an additional 3,778 probable coronavirus deaths for a total of 10,367 deaths.

"A death is classified as probable if the decedent was a New York City resident (NYC resident or residency pending) who had no known positive laboratory test for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) but the death certificate lists as a cause of death “COVID-19” or an equivalent," according to the city.

The change in the city’s accounting of fatalities came after officials acknowledged that statistics based only on laboratory-confirmed tests were failing to account for many people dying at home before they ever reached a hospital.

In speaking about deaths citywide on Tuesday morning, Mayor Bill de Blasio said there was still more work to be done to stop the outbreak.

"We're going to fight our way out of this. It's not going to happen overnight. There'll be good days and bad days," he said. "We got to start some momentum here. You need to keep at it. We all need to keep at it with the social distancing, with the shelter place because it's working. Every day, we have to win that battle to prove that we can reduce the spread of this virus, get those indicators to go down in unison over a longer period of time."

The number of New Yorkers pronounced dead in their homes has been larger than usual since the start of the outbreak, according to FDNY data. Between March 20 and April 5, on average, nearly 129 people were declared dead in their homes per day. That’s a nearly 385% increase from 2019.

Chair of New York City Council Health Committee Mark Levine called the revised death count "a painful but necessary accounting."

This article was written by Aliza Chasan for WPIX.

The Associated Press Contributed to this report.