Most of the news is good. Cases continue to fall in the Northeast and haven’t yet exploded in other places. We remain at levels that are much higher than the same period last year.
For the week ending on June 19th, there were 684,953 newly reported cases. This was a drop of 8.5% from last week so after seeing a small increase the week before, cases declined last week. And they have now declined three of the last four weeks but we have yet to see a large drop in cases as we did in previous waves.
When I get into the state level data, I’ve been using a different endpoint. This comes from way back when I using data from different sources and was starting various spreadsheets to focus on different things. I’ve decided to leave it as is primarily because weekend reporting is now so spotty that it doesn’t make much difference if I end the week on Saturday or Sunday.
Also, the state data is about finding trends and patterns and where the current hot and cold spots are so it isn’t as important for the two to lineup.
So let’s just look at the graph showing cases per million vs the weekly change.
Hawaii continues to stand out but they did see a drop in cases last week and that is now two in a row so it looks like the wave there has peaked. Wyoming looks odd and is the one to watch with both a high number of cases and cases rapidly increasing. It could be some kind of anomaly but this is two weeks in a row of big increases so it becomes the place to watch.
Overall, 33 states and DC saw cases drop last week. In Florida, the drop was less than 1% but it was still a drop. The biggest percentage drops were in Colorado, Rhode Island and West Virginia. In the 17 states that saw cases increase, the increase was less than 5% in seven of them. Other than Wyoming, big increases really only happened in Alabama and Mississippi.
So its a good pattern with more states seeing declines and only a few places seeing large percentage increases.
Case number remain high compared to previous waves with all states having more than 1000 cases (per million) last week.
The ten states with the most cases per million last week were Hawaii, Wyoming, Florida, New Mexico, California, Nevada, Alaska, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona. Basically the Pacific Coast and Southwest have the highest cases right now.
On the other side, the ten states with the fewest cases per million last week were New Hampshire, Vermont, South Dakota, Maine, Indiana, Connecticut, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Kansas and Ohio. We are starting to see the Northeast show up on this list now after being at the top in April.
This next graph shows this week compared to the same week last year.
We are seeing some correlation in the data. Among the ten with the fewest cases, Vermont, South Dakota and Connecticut were also in the top ten last year.
And, if we look at the states with the highest number of cases this year, five of them ranked in the top ten last year as well. Arizona, Washington, Nevada, Florida and Wyoming and Oregon just missed ranking 11th last year. Of course the case numbers are universally higher this year. But now I wonder what goes on in Wyoming in mid June that makes it favorable for cases.
Despite the high number of cases, the trends are favorable. Cases are dropping in most states and we are only seeing big rises in a handful of states. Florida is one to watch as well because they are getting into a time of year that has been favorable for cases the last two years but they’ve been running high for several weeks so it remains to be seen if cases will take off there.
I’ll just finish with one last graph showing the Pacific Northwest where cases are high relative to the rest of the country and have been flat there for several weeks. Last year, they hit a low in early March and then we had a small bump in the spring with cases declining to another low at the end of June before another wave started. This year, we’ve not seen the second drop off and cases have been flat for several weeks so we didn’t get the sharp peaks we saw in previous waves. Just another way this spring and early summer has been different.