Examples of health officials allegedly cooking the books to pin deaths unrelated to the coronavirus on the pandemic continue to emerge.
But one family is fighting to prevent their beloved father from forever being wrongly labeled as just another COVID-19 statistic.
Jack Dake, an Oklahoma man who lived an admirable life as a veteran, a lifelong blue-collar worker and a loving dad, died on May 6 after contracting COVID-19.
There’s just one problem with his cause of death, his family says: Jack Dake did not die from the coronavirus.
The man barely had any symptoms, his family told The Oklahoman, and he died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
But, the family insists, that didn’t stop a coroner from labeling Dake as a coronavirus statistic on his death certificate on May 14.
Dake’s son, Jack Dake Jr., told the newspaper that his father’s death had absolutely nothing to do with the pandemic.
“Alzheimer’s was the cause of death, and COVID-19 was not even a contributing condition,” Dake Jr. told The Oklahoman. “Yet it’s recorded as the only cause of death.”
Dake apparently contracted the coronavirus at an Oklahoma City assisted living center and tested positive on April 17.
According to his family, Dake was barely fazed by the infection, only feeling mild symptoms for three to four days.
“He was an amazingly physically healthy person” beyond the cognitive decline, Dake Jr. told the Oklahoman.
“His vitals were probably better than yours or mine at age 89.”
Dake Jr. maintained that his father never required supplemental oxygen and had a brief stay of fewer than two hours in an area hospital.
Five days after his hospitalization, the elder Dake fell and cut his hand, and was again taken to a hospital.
His condition had improved, despite the positive COVID-19 diagnosis.
“He was asymptomatic of flu, coronavirus or anything else,” Dake Jr. told the Oklahoman. “No coughs, no lung congestion, no fever, none of the other symptoms of the coronavirus. Not one. He was completely over all of that.”
But the elder Dake was in one of the final stages of his battle with Alzheimer’s and had quit eating and drinking, which is common for end-stage sufferers of the degenerative brain disease.
Dake Jr. also said his father was never again tested for the coronavirus, but the family did request that he be put on hospice care, as he was not eating and was dehydrated.
Dake was listed as being terminal with COVID-19 by hospice workers, and when he died 20 days after testing positive, his death was recorded as one of the state’s coronavirus fatalities.
“On the day he died, one of the people at the care facility said that his was a COVID-19 death, to which we immediately objected,” Dake Jr. told The Oklahoman. “COVID-19 had nothing whatsoever to do with his death, nor was it an underlying cause. In fact, since he had already been through the symptoms, he was probably negative for the coronavirus and now had antibodies.”
Dake Jr. wants his father’s cause of death changed to reflect that he died following a battle with Alzheimer’s, and he also attacked the system that marked his father as a pandemic statistic.
He said his father’s death might have been categorized as caused by COVID-19 because of the money involved.
According to USA Today, a provision in the Coronavirus Aid, Relieve and Economic Securities Act provides a “20% premium or add on” to Medicare reimbursements to health care facilities. (More information about that provision from the American Hospital Association.)
Dake Jr. said that the health care system has been led to misreport deaths — although he doesn’t blame health care workers.
“If a regulatory body requires us to do something, even if we disagree with it because we think it’s unsound or unreasonable, we still have to comply with it,” he told the Oklahoman. “Doctors, hospice, care facilities and hospitals are no different.”
But he still wants to correct the record.
“First, it is the incorrect cause of death and currently has governmental and political consequences,” Dake Jr. said.
“Second, not listing Alzheimer’s as the sole cause of death is harmful to the Alzheimer’s cause, including research and fundraising, as it wrongly diminishes the toll this evil disease has on people. Third, in the future, it may be essential to know if your family genetic history had Alzheimer’s in order for you to protect yourself or to obtain preventative treatment.”
“Imagine that you know your grandfather died of Alzheimer’s and not COVID-19, but you are excluded from receiving preventative treatment because his death certificate says ‘COVID-19.’”
According to radio host and Townhall columnist Larry O’Connor, who says he was related to Dake Sr. by marriage: “The government is lying about my wife’s grandfather’s death, and I bet they’re lying about many more.
“And here’s the thing … we’re talking about the government of the State of Oklahoma. Oklahoma. Far from the liberal, woke, left-wing bastion of agenda-driven government policy like New York, California, or Michigan,” he wrote in a column Thursday titled, “Jack Dake Didn’t Die from COVID, But the Government Says He Did.”
“Maybe a liberal definition of a COVID death helps funnel federal dollars to cash-strapped states,” he wrote. “Maybe it’s pure politics as mounting death tolls are believed to hurt President Trump.
“Who knows?” O’Connor added. “Frankly, it doesn’t matter. We deserve the truth. The Dake family deserves the truth.”
“Jack Dake Sr. did not die from COVID-19, but the government says he did. How many more Jack Dake Sr.s are there?”
The Dake family’s story is troubling, but also is part of a now nationwide conversation about how coronavirus deaths and cases are being reported.
A WOFL-TV reporter asked state health authorities if the young man had any underlying conditions.
The response from Orange County Health Officer Dr. Raul Pino was shocking.
“He died in a motorcycle accident,” Pino said.
Whether health care facilities or bureaucrats are motivated to attribute seemingly unrelated deaths to the coronavirus for financial or political reasons is uncertain.
But it is difficult to argue that the manner in which medical personnel and state health authorities handle reporting COVID-19 deaths needs more transparency and uniformity.
As many states again begin to again ramp up measures to apparently combat the continued spread of the coronavirus, stories such as these do little more than erode the public’s trust of government, and rightly so.
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