(CNSNews.com) - COVID deaths for the week ending August 22 have returned to levels not seen since the end of June.
Based on death certificates submitted to the National Center for Health Statistics -- part of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- 3,504 people died of "confirmed or presumed COVID-19," for the week ending August 22.
That is a 36.69 percent decrease from the 5,535 deaths recorded in the prior week, and a 79.43 percent drop from the mid-April peak of 17,039 COVID-involved deaths -- that is, deaths given the ICD-10 code of U07.1.
As the chart below shows, COVID deaths increased until mid-April, dropped steadily for ten weeks, then increased again for four weeks starting in July to a second peak of 7,676.
COVID deaths have now declined again for at least four weeks, maybe more, as death certificates continue to come in.
CDC notes that its weekly provisional death counts are incomplete because of the lag in time between when the death occurred and when the death certificate is completed, submitted to NCHS and processed for reporting purposes. This delay can range from 1 week to 8 weeks or more.
Data for the most recent two weeks always increases more significantly than data for distant weeks.
The official U.S. COVID death count based on death certificates now stands at 174,626, which is 0.053 percent of the United States population of 327,167,434, based on 2018 population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.