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Maine DHHS Has a Problem With Their COVID-19 Arithmetic


By:  David Deschesne

Fort Fairfield Journal, April 21, 2021


   Maine Department of Health and Human Services is performing a monumental work on their COVID-19 tracking page by attempting to catalog all of the minutia around a virus with a fatality rate similar to seasonal flu.  But, the charts and numbers can’t really be trusted because they are riddled with mathematical errors and inconsistencies where the data points on one chart do not reconcile with the same data points on other charts.

   For example, when last checked on April 14, 2021 the “Total New Cases” graph indicated 584 new cases on April 12, 2021 with the note that both molecular (PCR) tests and “probable,” non-lab confirmed cases are lumped in together with that number.  But, when one looks at the chart at the top of the page it showed 4,362 total molecular (PCR) tests recorded with a 4.7% positive rate.  Doing simple arithmetic that would mean a total of 205 new positive cases.  When looking at the total increase in “probable” cases on April 12, compared to the day before we find 203 cases.  Now, 205 PCR positive cases, plus 203 “probable” cases only adds up to 408 - not the 584 indicated on their chart of new cases.  Even if one were to add in the antigen tests for that day, there would only be an additional 135 cases, bringing the total to 543 - still 41 shy of their stated 584 new cases.  But, antigen tests aren’t (or, shouldn’t be) counted in new cases because they don’t represent a new infection.  Rather, positive antigen tests indicate that there was a past infection of COVID-19 at some point in time and the person testing positive now has antibodies and is thus immune.  So, that brings us back to a discrepancy of 176 cases that seem to simply be “bonused” into the chart in order to fluff up the new cases number.

   A cursory look at the same DHHS charts for April 14 shows 588 “new cases” on one chart, but only 365 positive PCR tests and 193 “probable” cases for that day, totaling together 558 - or 30 cases short of their “new cases” numbers.

   Furthermore, on April 10 the DHHS reported a total of 75 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Maine - a number that had stayed pretty much consistent for a month.  One day later, they reported 2 new COVID hospitalizations but jumped their total hospitalized to 98.  Friends, 75+2 does not equal 98. 

   The alleged rise in “new cases” appears to begin just after a federal lawsuit was filed against the governor and her CDC director for their illegal and dubious COVID mandates.

   Most would argue that these sloppily compiled numbers are a flimsy foundation on which to base the governor’s “state of emergency” declaration.