Uncounted, an ongoing investigation into uncounted and undercounted COVID-19 and other deaths due to death certificate errors, has been shortlisted as one of the best data projects by the international competition Sigma Awards.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Documenting COVID-19 project, a magic grant led by Derek Kravitz in partnership with MuckRock, have worked to figure out how public health records and resulting data influences and shapes government policy. Death certificates are among the most influential records.
For this story, journalists from five newsrooms reviewed CDC mortality data at the county level. They compared those figures with models developed by the CDC and a team of demographers at Boston University, collected death certificates and documents and interviewed more than 100 medical examiners, coroners, public health experts, families and policymakers. The team at Boston University worked with the journalists on this project, providing models of expected deaths in every U.S. county and identifying areas of potential underreporting of COVID-19 deaths.
Congratulations to Dillon Bergin, Betsy Ladyzhets, Jake Kincaid and Derek Kravitz of the Documenting COVID-19 project; Sarah Haselhorst, The Clarion-Ledger; Ashley White and Andrew Capps, The Daily Advertiser; Rudi Keller, The Missouri Independent; Nada Hassanein, USA TODAY!