CDC weekly surveillance report will update COVID-19 testing data

April 7, 2020

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) new weekly report, called COVIDView, will report on virus information including COVID-19 diagnostic testing data provided by public health and clinical laboratories, the agency said. For example, COVIDView will include the percentage of respiratory specimens collected from patients that test positive for SARS-COV-2.

The CDC modified its existing surveillance systems to track COVID-19 and has posted the first of what will be a weekly surveillance report, updated each Friday. In addition to laboratory data, the report will summarize and interpret key indicators, including information related to COVID-19 outpatient visits, emergency department visits, hospitalizations and deaths.

The first COVIDView showed: 

•        Visits to outpatient providers and emergency departments for illnesses with symptom presentation similar to COVID-19 are elevated compared to what is normally seen at this time of year when there is little influenza (flu) virus circulation. 

•         The overall cumulative COVID-19 associated hospitalization rate is 4.6 per 100,000, with the highest rates in persons 65 years and older (13.8 per 100,000) and 50-64 years (7.4 per 100,000). These rates are similar to what is seen at the beginning of an annual influenza epidemic. 

•         The percentage of deaths attributed to pneumonia and influenza (P&I) increased to 8.2 percent and is above the epidemic threshold of 7.2 percent. The percent of deaths due to pneumonia has increased sharply since the end of February, while those due to influenza increased modestly through early March and declined this week. This could reflect an increase in deaths from pneumonia caused by non-influenza associated infections, including COVID-19.

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