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Health - Public Health News

Posted on: May 31, 2020

Whatcom County COVID-19 Data Update

The charts on our website with numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases and COVID-19-attributed deaths were updated for the week of Sunday, May 24 through Saturday, May 30. In the past week we reported 26 new confirmed cases. We had reported one new death this week, but was reconciled and removed from our total of deaths due to COVID-19. 

As a reminder, the charts show cases dated by symptom onset, not by the confirmation of test results. The charts are organized this way to show a more accurate picture of when people became sick and how the illness has spread, rather than to reflect the results of tests. So you might see some of the previous weeks’ numbers change when we become aware of someone who became ill a week (or longer) ago, but did not receive test results until more recently.

A new chart was added this week to show the average number of new cases over the past 14 days. This is the metric being used by the Governor’s Office to determine which counties are eligible to apply for moving into Phase 2 of the Safe Start phased reopening plan. For each day on the graph, the number shown represents the average number of daily cases for the 14 days leading up to that date. Using a 14 day average helps us spot trends despite the big jumps or drops that can happen in a shorter time period. To apply for a variance and move into Phase 2, Governor Inslee has required counties to report fewer than 25 new cases over the past 14 days for every 100,000 residents. With about 225,000 residents in Whatcom County, this means we should have no more than 56 new cases over any 14 day stretch of time, which works out to about 4 cases per day.

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