ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri added 77 COVID-19 related deaths to its total Saturday, most of which occurred weeks or months ago.
The state’s Department of Health and Senior Services blamed technical issues in a tweet for the spike that brought the state’s total number of deaths since the pandemic began to 1,639. The newly reported deaths included five that occurred over the past 24 hours, with the bulk occurring from June to August.
“Through continuing efforts to ensure data transparency and quality, DHSS analysts discovered an inconsistency in death certificate diagnosis codes when compared to case information contained in DHSS disease surveillance systems,” health officials said in a tweet. “After thorough analysis and evaluation, these additional COVID-19-associated deaths were identified.”
More deaths also are expected to be added Sunday as a result of the review.
Meanwhile, health officials also reported that the number of confirmed cases had risen by 1,987 to 92,202. That includes 831 positive cases at the University of Missouri as of Friday.
Amid the rise in cases, St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson announced Friday in a social media post that bars, restaurants and nightclubs must continue to restrict capacity to 50 percent and close no later than 11 p.m. each night. The restrictions were originally set to end Sept. 7.
“We cannot afford to go backward,” she said.