Weekly Overview – ARCHIVED

The graphs on this page are being incorporated elsewhere on the site, and my weekly analysis has been moved to Latest Updates. For now, I’ve left this page as an archive, but please update your bookmarks as it will eventually be deleted.

The visualization below shows multiple COVID metrics on the same graph, based on their weekly values as a percentage from the Summer 2020 peak. With each wave, the metrics have moved together pretty similarly, with deaths lagging the other metrics. (NOTE: I do not show deaths for the previous two weeks as the data is still quite incomplete.)

Cases & Testing

My preference to focus on overall trends and indicators other than raw case counts, but many thresholds for risk levels are based on reported case numbers. Harvard has risk levels based on daily average case rates, which is used by the CovidActNow.org web site, where the red zone is defined as daily average of total cases exceeds 25 per 100K (which equates to 175 weekly cases per 100K). A different metric, used by the White House and CDC, defines the red zone for cases as over 100 cases per 100K in a week or more (total weekly cases instead of daily average cases used by Harvard). I track our weekly cases per 100K metric daily on my Today in Georgia home page, which is updated on weekdays. The CDC also incorporates positivity to determine a county-based “community transmission” level, where anything over 10% is in the red zone.

In the graph below, I show confirmed (PCR) cases and testing. The percent of positive tests is shown in a second graph below. Free COVID tests are readily available all over the state for anyone who wants one.

If you want to see a table of the raw numbers with additional explanation of the numbers, I created a separate page for the chart of Weekly Testing and Cases.

Reported Cases vs. Actual

Reported cases lag actual cases by about a week in general but generally stay pretty close to actual. However, cases are always under-reported on the way up a peak, and over reported on the way back down. In the graph below, the blue bars represent the number of reported cases in a given week, and the orange squares represent the number of COVID cases where symptom onset or lab test occurred that week. All of the actual case total (in orange) are subject to change some over time. However, the majority of changes will occur in the final week of the graph, which is likely less than half of the final amount it will be, and the previous weeks should see smaller changes. In the first Winter 20/21 wave, the peak of cases by onset date and report date were both the week ending January 9th. In the summer Delta wave, cases by onset peaked the week ending August 28th, but cases by report date peaked the following week (week ending Sept. 4). Remember that the orange dot in the final week of this graph is still quite incomplete.

Reported Deaths vs. Actual

Georgia records deaths by actual date of death on their graph on the DPH web site, and I track this, so that I can report on how many of the reported deaths each week are recent deaths vs. older deaths. Deaths reported in a given week often did not occur in the past week, or even the previous week. There is often a long delay for death reporting, so deaths by report date numbers are not nearly as close to reality as cases by report date. In between case peaks, less than half the deaths reported occurred within the prior 3 weeks.

You can see in the second graph below that initial death reporting in the first two weeks makes up only a third to a half of deaths for the week. During peaks, initial death reporting can be lower.

There is often lower death reporting on Sundays and Mondays, and fluctuations from day to day, with higher days often on Tuesdays, so it remains important not to focus on the number of reported deaths in a single day. It does not reflect the number of actual deaths that actually occurred that day. Read more about how deaths are reported in Georgia.

In the graph below, the blue lines represent the number of reported deaths in a given week, and the orange squares represent the number of known COVID deaths that actually occurred that week. All of the actual death numbers (orange squares) are subject to change some over time. However, the largest changes typically occur within the final three weeks. Deaths for recent weeks, especially the latest week (which is still preliminary) will increase further over the next few weeks. The peak of deaths from the summer Delta wave occurred the week ending Sept. 4, with a slow decline through September, then a much steeper decline after that.

Hospitalization Data

I have links on my Hospitalizations page to external dashboards showing more detailed hospitalization data by region. Keep in mind the numbers below only include the hospitalizations of those confirmed with COVID, but includes incidental hospitalizations, in which people at the hospital for another reason test positive for COVID. Additional hospital data is shown on my Hospitalizations page, including a graph showing combined hospitalizations for those with confirmed COVID and patients under investigation for COVID (PUI).

Links to Graphs