What Should we Track for COVID-19?

Due to the rapid nature of infectious disease spread, using data tracking systems that offer daily reporting time periods is a must. Daily, real-time data is needed for epidemiologists to conduct effective public health surveillance, or “the systematic collection, analysis, and interpretation of health data” (CDC). This data may include, for example:

  • Incidence (new cases over time)
  • Prevalence (cases at a specific point in time)
  • Hospitalizations (cases that result in hospitalization)
  • Deaths (cases that result in death)

Daily Public Health Surveillance aids the time-sensitive decision-making processes required to allocate public health resources to the areas of most need, protect the most vulnerable, and ultimately reduce and eliminate the spread of the disease.

Clear Impact Now Provides Daily Data Reporting for Effective COVID-19 Policy and Decision-Making

Clear Impact Scorecard is one solution to collect and disseminate real-time health data to aid rapid decision-making, public health policy and create measurable health improvements. 

Many health departments throughout the United States are using Clear Impact Scorecard to track health indicators and are now in need of daily tracking for COVID-19. To respond to this need, Clear Impact Scorecard offers daily time period tracking to enable quicker data collection, reporting, and analysis.

As a “nationally notifiable disease,” health departments must report COVID-19 cases to the federal government. This contributes to a coordinated response between local, state, and federal levels of government. Aside from fulfilling federal reporting requirements, health departments must have real-time insight into the evolution of COVID-19 data to quickly and effectively respond to the needs of their own communities. This is something monthly, and even weekly, reporting cannot accomplish.

But now, this is easier than ever to accomplish with Clear Impact Scorecard. And the benefits will far outlive COVID-19, helping health departments learn as they go and be better prepared for any future health crises.

Setting up Daily Data Tracking in Clear Impact Scorecard:

For current Scorecard users, there are several steps that we recommend completing to start tracking COVID-19 data daily:

  1. Set up a daily calendar type
  2. Create a measure for which to enter data
  3. Add the data values
  4. Make the measure shareable using the embed feature

You can read detailed instructions on setting up daily time periods in our Clear Impact Scorecard support article, here.

Scorecard, COVID-19, and Equity

In addition, as many of our Scorecard customers already know, providing context with the data is key, especially when it comes to tracking the effect of racial and economic inequity on disease rates and deaths. Aggregated quantitative health surveillance data is not enough by itself to reveal whether COVID-19 is an “equal opportunity disease” or whether particular groups are at higher risk.

In response to this question, Beth Blauer, executive director of Johns Hopkins University’s Centers for Civic Impact, and colleagues identified three areas of additional contextual information needed during the development of the U.S COVID-19 data dashboard. These include:

  • Health-care capacity — number of intensive care unit beds, staffing statistics, and how people accessed the local health-care system (private insurance, Medicaid).
  • Information on the demographics, including a racial breakdown, unemployment figures, and age distribution.
  • Comparing county disease data against the state’s as a whole (Kyle Swenson, Washington Post, 2020)

In Clear Impact Scorecard, users can create disaggregated data measures. Disaggregated data allows users to track the effect of inequities or demographic differences on indicators of well-being, including disease rates. Using disaggregated data to track COVID-19 may help to slow the spread by allowing decision-makers to identify who and where is more vulnerable. Scorecard users also have many opportunities to provide contextual/qualitative data to accompany numerical data.

Creating Disaggregated Measures in Clear Impact Scorecard

You can read detailed instructions on creating disaggregated data measures by creating calculations, in our support center article here. You can also read more about how to enter qualitative data here.

More Help

Would you like help tracking COVID-19 or other health data for your community? Feel free to contact us at info@clearimpact.com to discuss custom support and training opportunities.

Or, you can skip ahead and schedule a consultation for a custom virtual training here.