Daily COVID-19 data update XCVII: The State of the States

Graphs day 97, pandemic day 104, day 174 since the first cases were diagnosed. I still have our usual graphs of cases and deaths by country, and today I’ll also present the much-anticipated first results of my deeper look at the COVID-19 epidemic in my home country, the United States.

Total cases of COVID-19 diagnosed worldwide: 8,926,399

Total deaths: 468,257

We will almost certainly reach nine million cumulative cases worldwide tomorrow. Worldwide cases by day are shown on our usual graph below; actual cases in blue and smoothed cases in red to see the overall trend:

Cases of COVID-19 reported each day worldwide. The blue line is the actual reported number of cases; the red line is the smoothed number of cases (10-day moving average smoothing), showing the overall trend. Click for a larger version.

Countries that are headed in the right direction(-ish):

Countries where newly-reported cases per million people are steady or decreasing (click for a larger version)

And countries whose epidemics continue to get worse – although see the discussion below for what is probably some well-deserved good news.

Countries where the epidemic is still getting worse (click for a larger version)

Plenty of bad news to go around: Chile is still Looney Tunes increasing, Brazil is back up after what looked briefly like a plateau, and the U.S. is definitely on its way up. But for good news, look at Sweden. There was clearly a high peak in early June – higher than the previous peak of mid-April – but numbers are falling back down to April levels. If case numbers in Sweden are even lower tomorrow, I will gleefully move them into the “headed in the right direction” category.

A closer look at the United States

I’ve spent lots of time the last few weeks looking at various data sources to get a more detailed look at cases and deaths by U.S. state and county. Today I’ll show the state data; in the near future I’ll show the county data as well. I’m plotting data from the Corona Data Scraper website. State and county data are one day behind the national-level data.

For today, we’ll look at today’s data on a map of the U.S. Tomorrow, I’ll show a preliminary version of the kinds of graphs I’ve been making for countries, but for U.S. states. Which states have COVID-19 under control for now, and which do not? Find out tomorrow!


I’m quite proud of these maps. In addition to the work I’ve done the last couple weeks to show the data, I’ve quietly done a lot of work on mapping techniques (shapefiles and projections). Just figuring out how to properly show Hawaii took me nearly a week. I’m pretty happy with the results you see below.

Cases by state

As always, I like to start by plotting the thing that was actually measured, before doing any adjustments to provide additional insights. In the end it will be most useful to plot cases per million people (which will allow us to directly compare states to other countries), but first here is a map of total cases in each of the 50 states:

Total reported cases of COVID-19 by state (click for a larger version)

Remember that for each state, this map shows total cases reported since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. That includes people who have since recovered, people who have died of COVID-19, and people who are still sick. Each of the people represented in this graph counts toward the 8,926,399 cases reported worldwide.

Cases per million people by state

Dividing the numbers in the above map by the population of each state, and multiplying by one million, gives a better measure of how tragically COVID-19 has affected each state. Doing that and putting the numbers on the same U.S. map:

Reported cases of COVID-19 per million people by state (click for a larger version)

Because closer interactions between people lead to more opportunities for viruses to spread, it might make even more sense to adjust by population density as well. I’ll play with that in future maps.

Deaths by state

The previous two maps were both of reported cases. As mentioned above, that includes people who have since recovered. But nobody recovers from death, so a map of the total number of people dead from COVID-19 makes for the most useful comparison. Here is that map:

Total reported deaths from COVID-19 by state (click for a larger version)

Note that no one has yet died of COVID-19 in Hawaii. I’m a bit surprised by that given how much international travel there is into Hawaii, and it’s always possible that I did something wrong in my analysis. If you know differently, leave a comment.

Deaths per million people by state

Just as I did with cases, I divided the total deaths in each state by that state’s population, multiplied by one million, and plotted the results on the same kind of map:

Reported cases of COVID-19 per million people by state (click for a larger version)

Whew, that was a lot of work and a lot of fun. Tomorrow, I’ll start showing time-based graphs for states like I do for countries. That means we can compare states to one another and to various countries. New York has almost the same population as Chile (about 19 million each), and Massachusetts has almost hte same population as Serbia (about 7 million each). How to the graphs compare?

Fun with data

Want to try out some of these graphs for yourself? You can get the data that I used to make the country graphs from the European Centers for Disease Control’s Coronavirus Source Data; choose “all four metrics.” You can get the U.S. state data from the Corona Data Scraper site; choose today’s data as CSV.

If it would help you to start from my Excel templates, please use them! The county data and analysis is in my national-level data template (now version 4.2). Data and analysis for U.S. states is in my new state-level template (version 1.0).

Update tomorrow, and every day after that until this pandemic comes to an end. And an additional post coming Wednesday, about something other than COVID-19.

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