UPDATED: Wednesday, April 29 at 8:01 p.m.
The family of the man reported to be the first Brookfield resident to die from COVID-19 is disputing the Cook County Medical Examiner’s determination, and they have provided the Landmark a copy of the man’s death certificate, which corroborates their claim.
The Cook County Department of Public Health reported Wednesday that Brookfield had suffered its first official fatality as a result of COVID-19 on April 24. All three villages covered by the Landmark have sustained at least one COVID-19 related death since the pandemic began its spread in March.
According to records obtained from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s online database of cases, the primary cause of 69-year-old man’s death was due to COVID-19. However, the death certificate, filed with the Illinois Department of Public Health on April 28, shows that the man died of a different ailment. COVID-19 is not listed among any of the contributing factors to the man’s death on the death certificate.
The man’s wife told the Landmark that he had been tested twice for the disease, and that the tests were negative.
The Cook County Department of Public Health, meanwhile, continues to show on its online dashboard tracking deaths from the disease within the county that Brookfield has one fatality as a result of COVID-19.
It’s not the first time, the Landmark has encountered an issue with data being reported by the Cook County Department of Public Health regarding COVID-19 fatalities locally.
Riverside and North Riverside both had 35 people identified as testing positive for the disease, which results from infection by the novel coronavirus. One Riverside resident has died from the disease, although Cook County still officially has not listed that fatality, which occurred April 11. Riverside’s fire chief, however, said he received confirmation from the family of the 58-year-old man that he’d tested positive for COVID-19.
Cook County has reported two COVID-19 fatalities in North Riverside. Both were 73-year-old men. One died March 31 and the other on April 15.