The Florida Department of Health (DOH) is alleging that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) erroneously changed the state’s public-use Covid-19 data without consulting the DOH and failed to respond to multiple attempts to correct the error.
Jeremy Redfern, press secretary for the Florida DOH, explained that his agency transfers Covid data to the CDC several times a week. The data is then uploaded to the CDC’s database for third parties, which is “where everybody would go to download all of these data if they wanted to build their own system,” Redfern said.
Last week, the CDC unilaterally deleted roughly 20,000 Covid-caused deaths from its third-party database, but not from its own dashboard.
“Instead of calling us and verifying these data, they decided to switch to a different field in the data set and just delete a bunch of our deaths,” he told National Review. Redfern alleges that it took the DOH “about a week” to get ahold of the CDC to correct the error. Only on Thursday did the CDC send their data file back to DOH’s epidemiology team for correction.
Last week, Reuters reported that the CDC had removed “72,277 deaths previously reported across 26 states, including 416 pediatric deaths” from its data set “because its algorithm was accidentally counting deaths that were not COVID-19-related.” Redfern believes that missing deaths from Florida were included in that batch of deletions.