State revamps its COVID-19 dashboard, making data retrieval faster and easier

Photos by Mike Wren, New York State Department of Health
Th state’s mass vaccination site at Crossgates Mall in Albany. The state has made it easier to find vaccination rates, COVID case positivity rates, and other data on a new reorganized and updated website.

A new data hub recently unveiled by the governor includes new and reorganized COVID-19 data to make it easier for the public to access, read and understand. 

After 18 months of pandemic data collection —  which began in March 2020 — it was time a for a reorganization of the data, the governor said. 

The emphasis was on making it easer for the public, health care workers, teachers and school administrators and local officials to find relevant data and updates easier and faster. 

“One of my highest priorities… was to restore people’s faith in their government… we will be the most transparent administration in the state of New York,” Hochul said. 

With a major emphasis on transparency during this COVID announcement, Hochul announced the information that will be provided on the new data hub: The school’s daily report card, nursing home fatalities, vaccine completion by county and many other new features. 

“We are heading into a vulnerable time, and we are not getting complacent,” Hochul said. 

The new website marks the first time there is a single landing page for COVID-19 dashboards that is easy to access, rather than having to navigate different dashboards on different platforms.

The new data homepage links to 16 key data pages organized into five major categories: Testing cases and variants, hospitalizations and fatalities, vaccine data, long term care facilities and schools. The site was also organized to be a single access page for COVID data, allowing visitors to navigate more efficiently. 

The Department of Health also revamped several dashboards that were created early in the pandemic to provide information more clearly and relevant to current needs. 

For example:

The map of cumulative cases has been replaced with two new options – Cases per 100,000, 7-day average and Test Percent Positive, 7-day average. This scales the information appropriately and makes it easier to compare counties. The county cumulative tested number has been moved and can now be found when clicking a specific county for more details. Other information has been reorganized to put recent data before cumulative data, and labels have been changed slightly for clarity. 

The “table view” information is now available on the map and the “Positive tests over time, by region and county” page. While the county’s cumulative positivity rate has been removed, it can still be obtained by calculating the cumulative positive / cumulative tested, which is available in the map view.   

The “daily trends” graph is now available in the “Positive tests over time, by region and county” dashboard. In addition, the “Percentage Positive Results by County” Dashboard and “Percentage Positive Results by Region” Dashboard have been combined into one dashboard showing this information at both the regional and county level. The fatalities previously linked via the button on the bottom right of the COVID-19 Dashboard are now listed on their own page. 

On the Fatalities page, the same data that was previously available is now spread out on the page for improved readability. In addition, the nursing home and adult care facility fatality PDFs have now been consolidated under the long-term care fatalities section. 

The COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring Dashboard has been removed as it was built to support regional reopening metrics that are no longer relevant. Cases per 100,000 is available on the COVID-19 Testing Dashboard, and detailed hospitalization information is now available on Health Data NY. 

That page now includes additional self-reported data from the COVID-19 School Report Card, nursing home and adult care facility fatality data, and hospital admissions by gender and zip code, as well as hospital capacity and staff vaccination numbers.