Objectives. To determine the number of excess deaths (i.e., those exceeding historical trends after accounting for COVID-19 deaths) occurring in Florida during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Methods. Using seasonal autoregressive integrated moving average time-series modeling and historical mortality trends in Florida, we forecasted monthly deaths from January to September of 2020 in the absence of the pandemic. We compared estimated deaths with monthly recorded total deaths (i.e., all deaths regardless of cause) during the COVID-19 pandemic and deaths only from COVID-19 to measure excess deaths in Florida.
Results. Our results suggest that Florida experienced 19 241 (15.5%) excess deaths above historical trends from March to September 2020, including 14 317 COVID-19 deaths and an additional 4924 all-cause, excluding COVID-19, deaths in that period.
Conclusions. Total deaths are significantly higher than historical trends in Florida even when accounting for COVID-19–related deaths. The impact of COVID-19 on mortality is significantly greater than the official COVID-19 data suggest.
Author(s): Moosa Tatar, Amir Habibdoust, Fernando A. Wilson
Publication Date: 10 March 2021
Publication Site: American Journal of Public Health