Number of COVID-19 deaths with co-morbidities recorded on death certificate

Jaay-H made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Health

Currently waiting for a response from Department of Health, they must respond promptly and normally no later than (details).

From: Jaay-H


Dear Department of Health,

On 25 March 2020, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) promulgated a directive from the World Health Organisation for certifying deaths due to COVID-19.

The directive states:

“COVID-19 should be recorded on the medical cause of death certificate for ALL decedents where the disease caused, or is assumed to have caused, or contributed to death.”

The directive also states:

“Co-morbidities. Existing conditions, especially those which are chronic in nature, that may have also contributed to death should be certified in Part II of the Medical Certificate of Cause of Death. Chronic conditions may include but are not limited to: coronary artery disease, COPD, diabetes, cancer or disabilities.”

Causation and contribution are different medical constructs.

The ABS directives potentially conflate the statistics being reported to the Australian public.

We seek a copy of the document listing the number of COVID-19 decedents who passed away with co-morbidities recorded in Part II of their medical cause of death certificates.

Yours faithfully,


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