Data Notes for the Week of November 25
Today we released this week’s data snapshot. If you’re new to the data snapshot, we publish a weekly summary of the status for each of our metrics (you can find past issues on our data and metrics page). We have a few notes for this week’s issue (data from November 9—November 22):
Over the past two weeks, more than 1 person out of every 100 people in Dane County tested positive.
Dane County’s 14-day average number of cases was similar to last week. It is currently 441 cases per day, up from 439 in the last snapshot. In this 14-day period there were 6,178 total cases. Cases per day ranged from 225 to 689. Hospitalizations among people with COVID have plateaued, but remain at a high level.
We broke a record in testing during this period by averaging 6,057 tests per day. In the last snapshot, this number was 5,314.
Clusters continue to grow in assisted living and skilled nursing facilities.
This is particularly worrisome given the severe outcomes this population is experiencing, here and nationally. The Dane County Jail currently has the largest cluster in a single facility, with 69 cases in this two-week period.
At this time, we are not including additional cluster data in the Data Snapshot.
As we shared last week, the data we have is likely an undercount of the true number of clusters in the community.
- With the current state of contact tracing, cluster data are incomplete. Our staff have not been able to contact trace all cases due to the very high burden of cases in Dane County, which means that we may be missing many clusters or people connected to clusters due to lack of interview data.
- Even with complete contact tracing, cluster data are an underrepresentation of all cases. In a facility with a cluster, staff may be easily identified as part of that cluster, but clients or customers who are part of that cluster are less likely to be identified. This is because they could have many potential sources of exposure (or many places they went while they were infectious). We don’t always have details on the specific places they went or the specific dates and times they were there.
- We are seeing similar clusters to those seen throughout the country. CDC has recently published national examples of clusters we see here related to workplaces, hockey, and weddings. We’ve seen clusters in all of these settings in Dane County.
The categories of assisted living, skilled nursing, correctional facilities, childcare, and schools are reported differently than other cluster categories, which is why we are reporting them today. One case in these facilities results in an investigation, thus they are more straightforward to track and report.
When our ability to contact trace improves, we may be able to report on clusters again in the future. As noted above even with complete contact tracing, it is impossible to capture every person associated with a cluster.
Latinx and Black Dane County residents are disproportionately represented among people testing positive and people hospitalized for COVID.
- During this two-week period, members of the Latinx population represented nearly 1 in 5 cases and 13% of total hospitalizations but make up 6% of the Dane County population.
- Black, non-Hispanic people represented 9% of total cases and 14% of total hospitalizations but make up 6% of the Dane County population.