Washington admits error in reporting and lowers COVID-19 death toll
The number of coronavirus deaths in Washington dropped after health officials realized those people didn’t die of COVID-19.
Author: Allison Sundell
Published: 5:31 PM PDT June 17, 2020
Updated: 11:24 PM PDT June 17, 2020

SEATTLE — The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) adjusted the state’s number of coronavirus deaths and negative test results Wednesday after discovering inaccuracies in its reporting.

State health officials removed seven people from its death toll to account for people who tested positive for COVID-19 but didn’t die of the virus. Previously a COVID-19 death was counted if the coronavirus test came back positive.

Four of those deaths were in King County and three were from Yakima. They included two suicides, three homicides and two overdose deaths, according to DOH.

Additional deaths may be removed from the state’s coronavirus death toll as officials learn more during the outbreak...
Health officials also admitted that they made a mistake in the number of negative COVID-19 test results they have been reporting since April 21.

The health department says it combined antibody and molecular test results in its total tally of negative tests when it should have only included the molecular tests.

"We apologize for the error," a DOH spokesperson said in a statement...