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Nebraskans & Utahns, Important Notice About COVID Data in Your State

August 24, 2021  ||  by matt albasi

We seek to bring you the most reliable, up-to-date illness insights we can, which means Kinsa’s epidemiology team keeps a close eye on how states are reporting COVID cases. In the past weeks, Nebraska & Utah have changed the way they report COVID case data, which means that COVID cases, risk and forecast on HealthWeather may look much different than they actually are.

Map showing Utah and Nebraska at low covid risk, although recent data from here is misleading

If you have checked HealthWeather recently, you may have noticed that Nebraska seems to be doing exceptionally well in regards to COVID risk. That is misleading. At the end of June, Nebraska changed how they report COVID data for the state. Along with releasing less information than before, county-level information that we use to power HealthWeather is no longer available for more than 80 percent of the state. 

The situation in Utah is similar. They no longer report individual counties' data if they have a small number of residents. Instead, they roll counties together into a ‘county group’ and report their numbers in aggregate. Larger counties still report as usual.

Utahns can check the state dashboard for the most reliable information from the state. Nebraskans, however, don’t have many other options. Our epidemiology team recommends checking nearby states for some insight. We will continue to monitor for similar anomalies, notify you if we become aware of them and continue to advise on how you should interpret the data in order to go about your life informed and empowered.

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