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Understanding Coronavirus Data

For the last six weeks, we've created a set of simple headlines, dashboards, and resources to help you understand the latest information about COVID-19, what it means, and why it matters.

As sources have data have increased, the long-term nature of the pandemic has become apparent, and other areas of relief have become more important for Plenty, we've stopped updating the data daily and now update this page every few days. Check below a date that tells you when this page was last updated.

The latest headlines and visualizations are below. Previous headlines are archived under the data. For questions and further narrative, please see the FAQs under visualization.

Be safe. Keep the faith. We need you.

Today's Coronavirus Headlines

Today's main headlines are below. Previous headlines are archived under the visualization.

Be safe, plan, and prepare. (See the FAQ below for what we mean by "prepare.")

Data and conclusions updated as of 8:00 PM Central Monday, May 4. 

Cases Trend Up and Down Again

It's not the first time we've written this headline: After trending downward for several days, confirmed cases trended back upwards three days in a row, peaking again on May 1. Since then, there's been a steady three-day decrease even as testing has increased, which is positive news.

The Peak Seems Elusive

We've all been doing our best to flatten the curve – but the peak seems elusive. The overall rate of change remains about 3%. As total cases reach well over 1,200,000, that 3% means there is still a significant number of new cases each day.

Cases and Mortality Rates Vary Greatly By State

The maps showing testing results and mortality rates are quite striking, because both continue to illustrate how different the experience is across the country. The mortality rate in Michigan is a striking 9%. Compare that with the mortality rate in Utah, which is 1%. It seems clear that mortality is influenced by the underlying health and economic conditions of each community. 

Here We Go

We wrote several weeks ago that "it seems inevitable that federal guidelines are going to be both interpreted and implemented differently by different states. The West may re-open much sooner than the East Coast." That's happening as we speak. We'll be watching the data to monitor the impact of the different strategies for opening up.

Exploring Coronavirus Data

Our latest visualizations and observations.

US COVID-19 Trending

This graph shows total confirmed cases in blue along with cases confirmed in the last 24 hours in orange. The higher the bar, the more cases. The blue bars are cumulative; the orange bars are not. If you add up all of the orange bars, you'll get the highest (most recent) blue bar. 


Watching For The Peak

This plot compares the total confirmed cases (along the horizontal) against new cases confirmed each day (along the vertical). Each dot represents an individual day. Note that the axes are logarithmic (see the notes for more detail). We've all heard a lot about "the curve" – this is a way to watch the overall trend and see if and when the curve peaks. As of April 5, the curve seems to be bending downwards.

Log Graph

Cases By State

Each state is labeled with two numbers: The total number of confirmed cases, and the percentage that those cases represent out of the entire US caseload. The darker the state, the higher the percentage it represents.

Updated State Block

Testing and Positive Rates By State

Because so much of the confirmed case information relies on tests administered, we've gotten a large number of questions about tests. This map shows the total number of tests administered by each state (the number), and the percent of those tests that have resulted in positives (that is, confirmed cases). The graph is colored by the percentage of positive tests – the darker blue the state, the higher the rate of positives. The data is from the COVID Tracking Project, available here

This map is really important, because in the early stages of the outbreak, it wasn't clear if higher confirmed cases simply meant "more tests." This map helps illustrate that some states have more severe outbreaks than other states. 

Testing Map

Mortality Rates By State

As the virus runs its course, attention has shifted from the growth in cases to, sadly, the growth in deaths. This map shows the total number of deaths attributed to COVID-19 by each state (the number), and the percent of the total confirmed cases in the state that those deaths represent (the percentage). The graph is colored by the percentage of deaths – the darker red the state, the higher the mortality rate.

This map works in tandem with the maps above, showing both where states sit on the lifecycle of the virus, and how well vulnerable populations fared in the face of it. 

Mortality Rate

We can help right now.

The health and economic crisis caused by the Coronavirus has disrupted every aspect of society.
In this time of unprecedented change, we are here to help.

We have tailored our services to provide you with immediate advice, timely analysis, and rapid response. 

Navigating Change

  • Rewrite your strategy to be more flexible and resilient
  • Tailor your messaging and statements of impact to stay relevant and timely
  • Understand what is coming next to prepare for a different future


Preserving Revenue

  • Quickly understand your revenue situation
  • Adjust income streams to stay solvent and preserve scale
  • Build virtual communities to increase your engagement and support


Leading Consciously

  • Executive coaching to read the landscape and navigate decisions
  • Adapt to lead a virtual workforce in this period of crisis
  • Mindfulness and wellbeing resources to stay grounded amid change



More detail about the data, and answers to commonly-asked questions.

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