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Monitoring the Coronavirus Outbreak in Metro Areas Across the U.S.

For the nation as a whole, cases and deaths appear to have peaked or are starting to flatten. But there is a lot of regional variation.

To help provide a detailed picture of the past, present and future of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States, here are four ways of thinking about it in hundreds of metro areas across the country, using data compiled by 澳门葡京网址. This page will be updated regularly.

1. The Big Picture: New Cases and Deaths

The simplest way to track the progress of an outbreak is by seeing how many new cases and deaths are reported in a given area each day.

New cases per day

United States

0
100,000
200,000
300,000 cases
Mar. 2020
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sept.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 2021
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
New cases
7-day average
These are days with a reporting anomaly. Read more here.

New deaths per day

United States

0
2,000
4,000 deaths
Mar. 2020
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sept.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 2021
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
Includes many deaths from unspecified days
New deaths
7-day average
These are days with a reporting anomaly. Read more here.

New cases per day

New York City area

0
10,000
20,000 cases
Mar. 2020
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sept.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 2021
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
Probable data released
New cases
7-day average
These are days with a reporting anomaly. Read more here.

New deaths per day

New York City area

0
500
1,000 deaths
Mar. 2020
Apr.
May
Jun.
Jul.
Aug.
Sept.
Oct.
Nov.
Dec.
Jan. 2021
Feb.
Mar.
Apr.
Many deaths from unspecified days
New deaths
7-day average
These are days with a reporting anomaly. Read more here.
Metro and micropolitan areas are bigger than just the city limits of a given place — they often include the surrounding suburbs and exurbs.

2. Where the Outbreak Is Worst Now

The metro areas with the greatest number of new cases, relative to their population, in the last two weeks:

Average daily cases, last two weeks

Metro or micro area Population Recent cases Daily Per 100k
1 Owosso, Mich. 68,122 946 99.2
2 Flint, Mich. 405,813 5,220 91.9
3 Detroit 4.3 mil. 53,782 88.9
4 Jackson, Mich. 158,510 1,971 88.8
5 Bay City, Mich. 103,126 1,265 87.6
6 Mount Pleasant, Mich. 69,872 828 84.6
7 Monroe, Mich. 150,500 1,687 80.1
8 Adrian, Mich. 98,451 1,035 75.1
9 Peoria, Ill. 366,221 3,799 74.1
10 Grand Rapids, Mich. 1.1 mil. 10,569 70.3
11 Midland, Mich. 83,156 796 68.4
12 Holland, Mich. 118,081 1,122 67.9
13 Saginaw, Mich. 190,539 1,799 67.4
14 Lansing, Mich. 482,269 4,431 65.6
15 Battle Creek, Mich. 134,159 1,201 63.9
16 Ionia, Mich. 64,697 578 63.8
17 Kalamazoo-Portage, Mich. 340,743 3,000 62.9
18 Sayre, Pa. 60,323 490 58.0
19 Lewiston-Auburn, Me. 108,277 870 57.4
20 Sterling, Ill. 55,175 430 55.7
36 New York City area 20.0 mil. 113,682 40.6
10
20
30
40
50
60
Limited to areas with at least 50,000 people. Recent cases are those announced in the last two weeks, but in some cases may have taken place earlier because of delays in reporting.

Here, we’ve limited the window of cases to those within the last two weeks. Scaling those cases by the population of the area can help give a sense of the prevalence of the illness there and how strained a community’s health care system may be. Of course, case counts are subject to variable rates of testing — cases could fall in places simply because fewer tests are being done — so moderate changes in rankings on these tables may not always be meaningful.

3. Where There May Be Bad News Ahead

Here, the metro areas where new reported cases are rising the fastest, on a population-adjusted basis:

Where new cases are increasing fastest

Metro or micro area A week ago Now Change per 100k
1 Muskegon, Mich. 492 779 165
2 Monroe, Mich. 731 956 150
3 Bay City, Mich. 569 696 123
4 Corsicana, Texas 0 61 122
5 Grand Rapids, Mich. 4,636 5,933 121
6 Klamath Falls, Ore. 141 223 120
7 Augusta-Waterville, Me. 258 401 117
8 Holland, Mich. 493 629 115
9 San Juan-Bayamón, P.R. 3,158 5,436 113
10 Lewiston-Auburn, Me. 378 492 105
11 Adrian, Mich. 466 569 105
12 Oklahoma City 815 2,208 98.9
13 Battle Creek, Mich. 540 661 90.2
14 Jackson, Mich. 920 1,051 82.6
15 Altoona, Pa. 263 362 81.3
16 Lebanon, Pa. 274 388 80.4
17 Pueblo, Colo. 318 453 80.2
18 Palestine, Texas 13 59 79.7
19 Bluefield, W.Va. 83 158 75.5
20 Michigan City-La Porte, Ind. 212 294 74.6
580 New York City area 61,963 51,719 -51.2
-200
-100
0
100
200
Limited to areas with at least 50,000 people. Figures are sorted by the difference between the number of cases in the past week compared with the week prior.

4. The Places Hit Hardest

Below, the metro areas that have had the highest cumulative case rates since the start of the outbreak:

Cumulative confirmed cases

Metro or micro area Population cases Per 1,000
1 Eagle Pass, Texas 58,722 10,396 177.0
2 Yuma, Ariz. 213,787 36,957 172.9
3 Gallup, N.M. 71,367 12,186 170.8
4 Bismarck, N.D. 133,179 21,133 158.7
5 El Paso 844,124 132,547 157.0
6 Laredo, Texas 276,652 43,376 156.8
7 Lubbock, Texas 322,257 50,011 155.2
8 Rexburg, Idaho 53,006 8,209 154.9
9 El Centro, Calif. 181,215 27,920 154.1
10 Sioux Falls, S.D. 268,232 41,220 153.7
11 Sioux City, Iowa 169,878 25,695 151.3
12 Dalton, Ga. 144,724 21,594 149.2
13 Hanford-Corcoran, Calif. 152,940 22,755 148.8
14 Pine Bluff, Ark. 87,804 12,939 147.4
15 Provo-Orem, Utah 648,252 95,414 147.2
16 Rio Grande City, Texas 64,633 9,400 145.4
17 Show Low, Ariz. 110,924 16,032 144.5
18 Beaver Dam, Wis. 87,839 12,555 142.9
19 Roswell, N.M. 64,615 9,037 139.9
20 Calhoun, Ga. 57,963 8,091 139.6
113 New York City area 20.0 mil. 2,272,021 113.6
1
2
5
10
20
50
Limited to areas with at least 50,000 people.

As the pandemic progresses, the number of cases per capita can provide a good measure of the prevalence of coronavirus in a community, even if the deadliest period of the outbreak has passed, as it may have in places like Seattle, New York and New Orleans.

There are other measurements that would be helpful in understanding the progress of the epidemic in different places, such as the number of new hospitalizations, the number of tests administered or the number of people showing any symptoms of respiratory illness. But confirmed coronavirus cases, however incomplete, are the most useful daily statistics currently available at a local level everywhere in the country.

About the data

The Times has identified the following reporting anomalies or methodology changes in the data:

April 6: The Times began using deaths reported by the New York State Department of Health instead of the city's health department.

April 19: New York State added a backlog of confirmed deaths from April 17 and April 18.

June 25: New Jersey began reporting probable deaths, including those from earlier in the pandemic, causing a jump in the number of total deaths.

June 30: New York City added a backlog of deaths from unspecified dates.

Aug. 6: Our database changed to record deaths of New York City residents instead of deaths that took place in New York City.

Aug. 20: New York City removed four previously reported deaths after reviewing records.

Dec. 7: The New York City health department began reporting probable cases. It also revised how it assigns cases to zip codes throughout the city.

Jan. 4: New Jersey began reporting probable cases identified through antigen testing.

March 18: New York City had a multiday disruption in reporting new data.

In data for the United States, The Times is now including cases and deaths that have been identified by public health officials as probable coronavirus patients. Some states and counties only report figures in which a coronavirus infection was confirmed through testing. Because confirmed cases are widely considered to be an undercount of the true toll, some state and local governments have started identifying probable cases and deaths using criteria that were developed by states and the federal government.

Confirmed cases and deaths are counts of individuals whose coronavirus infections were confirmed by a laboratory test. Probable cases and deaths count individuals who did not have a confirmed test but were evaluated using criteria developed by national and local governments. Some governments are reporting only confirmed cases, while others are reporting both confirmed and probable numbers. And there is also another set of governments that are reporting the two types of numbers combined without providing a way to separate the confirmed from the probable. The Times is now using the total of confirmed and probable counts when they are available individually or combined. Otherwise only the confirmed count will be shown.

Governments often revise data or report a large increase in cases on a single day without historical revisions, which can cause an irregular pattern in the daily reported figures. The Times is excluding these anomalies from seven-day averages when possible.

Read more about the methodology and download county-level data for coronavirus cases in the United States from 澳门葡京网址 on GitHub.

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