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State adds 79 presumptive positive COVID-19 deaths to total

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Posted at 4:46 PM, Apr 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-24 16:46:53-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The state of Indiana added Friday 79 presumptive positive deaths to its total COVID-19 data.

A presumptive positive death is when a physician listed COVID-19 as a contributing cause of death for a patient, but there was no positive test documented, Indiana State Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box said.

The diagnosis of COVID-19 was determined by using the patient’s X-ray or CT scan of their chest.

The 79 deaths have occurred since the beginning of the COVID-19 spread in Indiana.

“This may include ruling out other bacterial or virus infections, such as influenza as the cause of their illness,” Box said.

The presumptive positive deaths will be in a separate section of the ISDH COVID-19 dashboard, not included in the overall death total.

“Adding these deaths gives us a better sense of the impact of COVID-19 and positions us to also capture more of these clinical diagnoses going forward,” Box said. “We continue to urge physicians to test symptomatic patients if they have the resources to do so but also recognize that people who may not be tested are also likely to have COVID-19.”