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Information: COVID-19 ‘dashboard’ could use improvement

West Virginia’s online portal to epidemic statistics (dhhr.wv.gov/COVID-19) needs to be improved, state Department of Health and Human Resources Secretary Bill Crouch said last week.

We agree. We can think of no acceptable excuse for that not occurring.

Crouch told a group of lawmakers he wants to provide more information at the website. One helpful update on a daily basis would be the state’s Rt rate. That is a term used to track the average number of people who contract the disease from someone already infected. By last Monday, West Virginia’s Rt rate was 1.36 — one of the worst in the nation.

“I’m looking at making several changes to the dashboard,” Crouch said. “I believe the dashboard should only come out once a day. It should be a 5 o’clock release with all of the numbers included in it and include the number of additional positive cases in that day.”

He is wrong that the dashboard should be updated just once a day. Keeping the two updates now provided is better. Even more frequent updates should be possible.

The COVID-19 “dashboard” should be as detailed and current as the technology and personnel allow. Crouch should find whatever resources are needed to make that happen.

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