One chain deletes 42% of its death tally

  • The government has used the self-reported data to award billions of dollars in COVID aid
  • Deletions by Trilogy Health Services far eclipse changes made by any other chain
  • Leading nursing home researcher calls changes “suspicious”

Federal regulators will review the official tally of COVID-19 deaths at one of the nation’s largest nursing home chains after the company cut its reported death toll by an unprecedented 42% following a USA TODAY investigation

Presented with USA TODAY’s findings that Trilogy Health Services had the worst death rate among its peers during last winter’s coronavirus surge, company officials said they discovered they had included deaths in their mandatory weekly reports that should not have been counted.

On Thursday, a chief medical officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services called the resulting changes “concerning.”

“CMS takes reports of data inaccuracy very seriously and will hold any bad actors accountable,” Dr. Lee Fleisher, the agency’s director of clinical standards and quality, said in an emailed statement. 

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