Does it matter if daily COVID-19 case numbers vanish? A case in point

A COVID-19 testing center.

Combined ShapeCaption
A COVID-19 testing center.

DPH said weekly data show “a more complete picture”

The Georgia Department of Public Health announced last week that it will cease providing daily case counts for COVID-19 as of April 15. Instead, DPH will report case numbers once weekly, on Wednesdays.

DPH said it is making the change because weekly data show “a more complete picture,” because more unreported tests are being done at home, and because hospitalizations will provide a more reliable picture of trends. Hospitalizations tend to follow new cases by a few days or a week.

Here below is an example of daily data reports, which showed the beginning of the omicron spike in Georgia, in time for people to take precautions for Christmas gatherings.

The numbers skyrocketed in the five days before Christmas.  Only by having daily counts would you have known that in making decisions on travel and gathering then.

2,714: New COVID-19 cases in Georgia, including both confirmed and probable, counted as a daily seven-day moving average on Monday, Dec. 20, 2021.

3,236: Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2021

5,060: Thursday, Dec. 23, 2021 (next available day of data)

Source: Georgia DPH

EARLIER IN THE AJC: Georgia scales back on reporting of COVID-19 data