Access to Broadband in Washington State - A Brief Report
Authors: Ofer Amram, Solmaz Amiri, Jonathan Espenschied, and John Roll
Weekly Round-up for August 3rd, 2020
White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said yesterday on CNN's State of the Union. "It is extraordinarily widespread — it's into the rural as equal urban areas." Use the CURE Tracker to see for yourself COVID trends by county, for metro and non-metro areas.
Among the states, Florida still ranks top in daily rates of COVID diagnosis, but there are signs of improvement, with a downward trend overall in the state in both Metro and non-Metro counties. But Florida’s non-Metro counties continue to show higher COVID rates (cases per 100k resident population) than Metro counties. Mississippi, with the nation’s second highest COVID rates, also showed an overall decline in daily cases last week, but with Metro counties showing sharper declines than non-Metro counties.
Southern counties are leading the nation with counties in Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Georgia, and Florida showing highest daily rates of COVID diagnosis. Non-metro counties show rates that are nearly double that in metro counties.
Mortality from COVID is surging in Texas with Willacy, Angelina, and Fayette counties leading the nation in percentage rise in deaths over the last week in rural counties and Guadalupe and Johnson leading metro counties. Death rates (COVID deaths per 1M resident population) are also highest for non-metro counties, and Texas is overrepresented for both non-metro and metro counties.
WSU COVID-19 Tracker
This data visualizer plots publicly-available data on diagnosed cases and deaths from COVID-19 at the county level with a focus on differences between Metro and NonMetro counties. Data on cases and deaths are standardized per 100,000 county residents, based on US Census data. For cases, we have applied the cut-offs for levels recommended by the Harvard Global Health Institute. We update the visualization daily and provide daily case and death statistics based on a moving 7-day average. We also use the moving daily statistics to compute changes in both cases and deaths, on a percentage basis, for the preceding 7 days. For questions contact firstname.lastname@example.org
This report highlight the relationship between poor access to high speed internet and poor health outcomes in Washignton state. Census Tracts with poor access to broadband services, are experiencing significantly higher mortality rates. Broadband access has been shown to be a proxy for socio economic status and education level, which directly impact health outcomes. However, access to broadband is such a basic and critical component of our daily life that improved access to this service and educating the population on how to benefit from it will likely have a direct impact on improved access to care, access to information, and consequently on improved health outcomes.