The number of Covid-19 deaths have been overestimated, according to HIQA.
In a study, the watchdog recorded 1,200 excess deaths between March and June compared with the official death toll of more than 1,700.
People who were infected with Covid-19, but died as a result of other reasons are included in the official total.
We have examined the number of excess deaths that occurred during the current COVID-19 epidemic to inform the National Public Health Emergency Team’s response. Read the new analysis here: https://t.co/bx0itJ2QEV pic.twitter.com/hVp7zNvuDy
— HIQA (@HIQA) July 3, 2020
Using data from RIP.ie, there were up to 1,200 more deaths between March and June than there usually would be for the time of year.
HIQA's Chief Scientist Dr Conor Teljeur explains what public health doctors can learn from the figures:
"I think it's a reassurance that they have actually been capturing all the data, they are certainly not understating the number of deaths from covid-19."
"What we've seen in some other countries is that they've had undercounts, I suppose notably in the UK."
Tanaiste Leo Varadkar said the findings are "Interesting but not a surprise. In Ireland we counted all deaths, in all settings, suspected cases even when no lab test was done, and included people with underlying terminal illnesses who died with Covid but not of it."
The CSO has also released data on death rates from Covid-19, which calculates a similar number of excess deaths.
It says it is possible there will be a lower death rate later in the year because of the high numbers of elderly people and those in nursing homes who died after testing positive for coronavirus.