Governor launches COVID-19 risk assessment dashboard with data

Gov. Jay Inslee Wednesday announced a new COVID-19 risk assessment dashboard to aid the state in gauging when and how to best lift restrictions around ‘Stay Home, Stay Healthy” in Washington.

Wednesday marked 100 days since the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Washington state. The governor mentioned that in the coming weeks, the state will slowly start “turning the dial” on several physical distancing restrictions in accordance with changing epidemiological and public health data.

“It is important to share the information and data that informs our decisions,” Inslee said. “As each decision we make informs choices that impact the health and safety of Washingtonians, we want to show that there are multiple indicators we rely on for how we can remain healthy and open our businesses.”

The dashboard features five “dials” measuring different data points in the state. The public will be able to view the data guiding the state’s ongoing discussions on recovery planning by visiting the state Department of Health website or

The governor’s full data presentation can be found here.

Disease Activity

This dial represents a snapshot of the data the state considers when making decisions related to the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order and other COVID-19 related orders. Low and falling disease burden in the state is depicted in the dial, and is measured by:

  • COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths in Washington
  • Rates of COVID-19 spread throughout Washington (aka R0 or “R naught”)
  • Modeling data from IDM, IHME and Youyang Gu
  • Physical distancing adherence trends in Washington state

Ultimately, guidance from the state and the lifting of distancing restrictions is based on the ability to have appropriate health and safety protocols in place.

Testing Capacity and Availability

The third dial measures the state’s testing capacity and availability of tests for everyone who needs one.

“Recovery begins with a massive testing and contact-tracing effort,” Inslee said. “The federal government has promised more testing supplies, and we hope to see it fulfilled, but we still need more.”

In this dial, the ability for everyone with COVID-19 symptoms and those with high risk exposures to be tested immediately is measured by:

  • Number of tests performed per day
  • Testing capacity, including supply chain and speed

Case and Contact Investigations

The fourth dial measures the state’s ability to conduct case and contact investigations and quickly act to isolate and quarantine those affected.

The ability to rapidly isolate those with COVID-19 and identify/quarantine their contacts is measured by:

  • Number of investigators trained and working
  • Availability of isolation and quarantine facilities in active jurisdictions
  • Percent of cases investigated within 24 hours of receipt of positive test reports
  • Percent of contacts reached within 48 hours of receipt of report

Risk to Vulnerable Populations

The fifth dial measures the risk COVID-19 poses to Washington’s most vulnerable populations.

This is measured by:

  • Number of outbreaks in long term care facilities per week
  • Demographic and equity data

“There are no pharmaceutical interventions for this virus,” Inslee said. “All of our progress can be unraveled if we do not have appropriate precautions in place to protect our loved ones.”

Health Care System Readiness

The second dial measures health care system readiness, a crucial component in the state’s efforts to “reopen.”

This readiness is measured by:

“Preparedness in our health care system has made great strides, which is one reason why we returned 400 ventilators to the national stockpile and were able to recommend the redeployment of the Army field hospital at CenturyLink Field,” Inslee said.

View the governor’s full data presentation here.

Inslee also said that more details on the phased-in approach for Washington state’s “re-opening” in different sectors of the economy would be released Friday.

  1. It should and probably there is a data set somewhere that goes to the CDC, it just won’t be reported on much because the focus of the public is on the current thing, which is Covid. With the push in quite a few areas to count probable deaths as Covid some flu deaths are almost for certain being put down as Covid. Without an actual test taking place the two look very similar and as of today reported flu deaths are down 50-70% in many places across the country.

  2. We don’t know yet but it could be that CV is more efficient and gets there first and beats out the flu. The problem we may be trying to solve is “how do we get back out there and keep the combined infection rate from skyrocketing?”

  3. Governor, you are dealing with Adults—-You have trained us in just what needs to be done—allow us to be FREE!!
    Allow the Millions of Small businesses to earn their living along with the millions of workers supporting them.

  4. So far it seems that they both have seasons and Covid comes later than the flu. In most areas the flu peaks in Feb and ebs in April. Short of a second wave it looks like Covid peaks in April and ebs in June, but its hard to tell because of the possible shift caused by the stay at home orders.

    I do remember the CDC put out a notice in Oct to expect a worse flu season (2019-2020 cycle) this year than 2017 or 2018 and in Washington state at least the flu deaths are half of last year and a third of the year before. Either their projections were way off or the numbers went somewhere else.

    Maybe the school closures helped with the flu, because it now looks like kids are far more likely to get the flu than Covid but we closed the schools in March which is post flu peak.

  5. Anybody who’s still wondering about the data or how they are being analyzed and projected, I urge you to view Governor Inslee’s Press Conference of April 29th. He goes into much detail, but in a way that’s understandable to a broad range of people.

    1. Yes, he presented lots of modeling that he’s using as something “you can take to the bank”. My current view of Inslee is that he’s going to milk this issue until he’s re-elected. Hopefully I’m wrong and he’ll present something more optimistic today.

      1. Inslee’s press conference today hasn’t changed my opinion. Barber shops will not open for another 5 weeks, and we will not be able to go to church until mid July. He’s undoubtedly enjoying the power he now has. Incidentally, Inslee and another official who briefly appeared with him clearly have had haircuts in recent weeks.

        1. Ron, opening up too soon likely means an upward spike in cases and deaths. You think Governor Inslee ought to open up right now even if it kills an additional X Washingtonians? How many additional deaths, that X figure, are OK so that people can get professional haircuts?

          Our Governor is erring on the side of caution, in favor of fewer deaths, fewer sick people occupying hospital beds, and a smaller impact on our healthcare system. He has my full support. People who want him replaced can vote accordingly in November, most likely for Tim Eyman, one of the noisy protesters in Olympia the other day.

  6. The lives saved from this effort may likely be traded for others> In Washington, the highest risk of suicide will likely occur between October and December 2020. This is consistent with known cycles of disaster response patterns.

    Seasonal affective disorder also increases at our latitude at that time of year.

    From DOH: “Approximately 650,000 Washingtonians were receiving treatment for behavioral health needs prior to the COVID19 outbreak. Approximately 700,000 Washingtonians have mental health concerns, but were NOT receiving services prior to the outbreak. Approximately 10% to 33% of individuals experience symptoms of acute stress (such as negative thoughts, sadness, intrusive dreams or memories, avoidance, insomnia or hypersomnia, headaches & stomach aches) within one month after the impact phase of a disaster or critical incident.

    In Washington, that timeline begins mid-March 2020. 10, 11, 12 4. Based on population data for Washington, and known cycles of common psychological responses to disasters, we can reasonably expect that approximately TWO MILLION Washingtonians could experience behavioral health symptoms consistent with acute stress, anxiety, or increasing depression from the present time to over the next two to six months. These symptoms will likely be strong enough to cause significant distress or impairment for most people in this group.”

    I’m curious to know if anyone has the economic impact projections to small business owners? I had a conversation with an individual the other day who was wrestling with his life’s work being labeled “non-essential.” While we prevented some deaths, we’ll trade those for others and have an economic ditch to dig out of for most.

    Although, I could be missing something here…open to polite input.

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