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Coronavirus Statistics: Tracking The Epidemic all over New York

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The Gothamist/WNYC newsroom is using statistics to shape our daily coverage of the COVID-19 epidemic. These are our current charts, based on information we get from the city and state.

Please send any questions or comments to [email protected]

Reopening New York City

Table showing the early warning criteria used by the state and New York City to monitor if it is safe to proceed with the next three stages of reopening. The table has one column showing the criteria and the one column for each day from June 19 to June 27. Each column shows whether the criteria was met that day. Today, New York City met 9 out of 10 qualifications. For the state qualifications, we met the tests per capital and contact tracers per capita requirements and the amount of positive tests under 5%. We also met new cases under 10 per 100K, the new hospitalizations under 2 per 100k criteria and our ICU bed availability was over the 30% minimum. We did not meet hospital bed availability over the 30% minimum. We met 3 out of 3 city qualifications. The city met the hospital admissions under 200 per day requirement and the positive testing being under 15% requirement, and we are finally under the 375 critical care patients in H&H maximum.

After a few weeks of tracking, the city met both the state and city criteria for reopening on June 7th, and began phase 1 of reopening on June 8th. The state is now monitoring seven criteria, and the city is monitoring three criteria, to decide whether it is safe to proceed to the next three stages of reopening- there will be at least a two week period between each phase. If these criteria show sustained movement in the wrong direction, the reopening progress could be paused or reversed. The city entered Phase 2 on June 22nd.

Table showing the early warning criteria used by the state and New York City to monitor if it is safe to proceed with the next three stages of reopening. The table has one column showing the criteria and the one column for each day from June 19 to June 27. Each column shows whether the criteria was met that day. Today, New York City met 9 out of 10 qualifications. For the state qualifications, we met the tests per capital and contact tracers per capita requirements and the amount of positive tests under 5%. We also met new cases under 10 per 100K, the new hospitalizations under 2 per 100k criteria and our ICU bed availability was over the 30% minimum. We did not meet hospital bed availability over the 30% minimum. We met 3 out of 3 city qualifications. The city met the hospital admissions under 200 per day requirement and the positive testing being under 15% requirement, and we are finally under the 375 critical care patients in H&H maximum.

To make it easier to spot recent trends, we’ve made this graph showing some of the major COVID statistics for the city and state. If a second wave begins, you’d see some of these lines begin to rise.

Testing

Bar chart showing the ratio of positive COVID-19 tests in comparison to the number of tests performed in the state. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 1, 2020  to June 25, 2020 and the y-axis is the number of tests by 10 thousands, topping at 50,000. On June 26 there were 703 new positive COVID-19 tests reported, which is 0.96% of the total number of tests conducted.   The number of tests conducted is always higher than positive tests, the two follow a similar pattern, but there were much higher rates of positive tests in March and April. The number of tests conducted ramped up in mid March and saw slow growth through April and a spike in late April. Since then the number of tests conducted has gone up and down throughout but has overall been more than March.

Testing began in earnest at the beginning of March, and has increased ever since, though it tends to dip on weekends. We investigated the testing rates per county- some have seen a lot more testing than others.

A line graph of the testing positivity rate in New York State and New York City. The x-axis is dates from March 5 to June 26. The y-axis is the positivity rate in percent, starting at 0% and going up to 60%  in increments of 20. The positivity rate line is an overall curve that peaked around April 5 at 60%. But there was more volatility in the rate day to day until April 16. Since then the positivity rates have consistently trended down. On June 25 the positivity rate for New York State was at .96% and the positivity rate for New York City was at .96%.

The testing positivity rate tracks the percentage of tests which came back positive each day. After bouncing around early in the epidemic when there was very little testing, it gradually rose to nearly 60% around April 5th, and has fallen since. This is explained by an increase in the number of people tested each day, as well as by the waning of infections as social distancing has curbed spread.

Positive Cases

Line chart comparing  positive cases for New York City and Downstate New York Counties. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 1, 2020  to June 27, 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases counting by 50,000, topping at 450,000. Each county is assigned a colored line and the state total is given its own line. All counties have increased. New York City has by far the most cases topping on June 27 at 214,434. cases. All other counties are under 50,000 cases. For the counties under 50,000 Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties leads for the number of positive cases.

The majority of the state’s cases are in New York City, but the downstate suburbs are also major contributors to the total. Positive cases track only people with a positive COVID test result- because testing has been limited, the number of people who have actually been infected with COVID is much higher- about 10 times the positive cases, according to New York State’s antibody screenings- on 5/2/20, they registered 20% of the sampled population was positive in NYC and 12% was positive in New York State. We do not yet know if a positive antibodies test signals that a person has become immune to COVID.

Bar chart showing new COVID-19 cases in New York State and New York City. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 1, 2020  to June 26, 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases counting by 2,500, topping at 125,000. For June 27, the number of new cases for New York State was 703. The number of new cases for New York City was 364.  The graph shows a steady increase in cases from March to mid-April. After April 11, cases fluctuated but the 7 day average mostly declined. The 7 day average line has declined since April 26 though and continues that trend.

As the curve in new cases begins to flatten, the trend will be easier to see looking only at new cases.

Line chart showing cases per capita for New York City and each Downstate New York Counties in order to compare with a control on population. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 1, 2020  to June 26, 2020 and the y-axis is the number of cases per 100,000 population, counting by 1,000, topping at 4,000. Each county is assigned a colored line and the state total is given its own line.  All counties have increased but the increase began to slow in late April. Rockland has the highest number of cases per capita, with 4,165 per 100,000 as of June 27. NYC has 2,478 cases per 100,000 and falls in the middle of the pack. As of June 26, the ranking of counties with the most cases per 100,000 of population is Rockland (4,162 cases), Westchester (3,591), Nassau (3,072), Orange (2,801), Suffolk (2,785), NYC (2,487), State Total (2,006), Dutchess (1,427), Putnam (1,328), Ulster (993).

When normalized for population, Rockland and Westchester counties are leading the other downstate counties in cases by a large margin. On June 23rd, Lombardy, the center of the outbreak in Italy, would be around 932 on this graph. Nassau and Suffolk counties have more cases per capita than New York City.

Line chart showing positive cases by each borough. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 15, 2020  to June 26 , 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases by 20,000 exceeding 60,000. Each borough is assigned a colored line. All have increased. The boroughs in order by total cases are Queens (64,475), Brooklyn (58,588), Bronx (47,485), Manhattan (26,661), and then Staten Island (13,904).

Queens and Brooklyn have larger populations than the other boroughs, so they tend to have more cases. Note: on 5/11, the Department of Health added “about 3,600 new cases who were diagnosed earlier in the epidemic but had missing address information. Most of these cases were diagnosed in late March and April.” This led to a small but noticeable uptick in the boroughs’ case lines.

Line chart showing positive cases per capita for each borough in order to compare with a control on population.  The x-axis is dates ranging from March 15, 2020  to June 27, 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases per 100,000 population. The scale is by 1 thousands and tops at 3,000.  Each borough is assigned a colored line. All have increased except for Staten Island which has remained stagnant since May 28. The boroughs in order of cases per 100,000 are Bronx (3,316), Queens (2,837), Staten Island (2,793), Brooklyn (2,316) and Manhattan (1,637).

At the beginning of the outbreak, all boroughs had similar infection rates, but over time, the Bronx and Staten Island have pulled away from the others. Recently, as cases stabilized in Staten Island, Queens rose to second place.

A heat map showing the rates of COVID positives per capita in each zip code in each borough. The darker the color, the more confirmed cases per capita. The highest density areas are in northern Queens, near Corona and East Elmhurst and in the east Bronx. The lowest densities are in lower Manhattan.

Starting on 4/1, the New York Department of Health started to release positive cases by Zip Code information- the map above shows cases over the last two weeks, to make it easier to see where the virus is still spreading. You can see totals for the entire epidemic, as well as possible demographic associations, at our larger version of the map..

Scatterplot showing median income versus cases per capita for communities in different boroughs. Each community has a colored point that corresponds with the borough it is in. The x-axis is median income with a scale of 20k up to 100k. The y-axis is the COVID cases per 100,000 in increments of 200 up to 1,800. There is a clear negative correlation between median income and COVID cases per capita. Wealthier neighborhoods had fewer cases per capita. Manhattan neighborhoods tended to have higher media incomes and less cases per capita while neighborhoods in the Bronx tended to have lower median incomes and higher concentration of cases.

We’ve charted the positive case zip code data in scatterplot. On average, the lower income, older, and more diverse a neighborhood is, the more positive cases it will have. You can examine individual neighborhoods and various demographic factors on our larger chart.

Hospitalizations

Line chart showing the number of people hospitalized and in ICU in the city and then the state as a whole.  There’s one line showing the number of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in New York State and one line showing state ICU numbers. Then there are two more lines for the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the city and ICU patients in the city. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 15 to June 26. The y-axis is totally cases needing care in 5 thousands, up to 20,000.  For both state and city, hospitalizations and ICU patients increased until mid-April. For the state, hospitalizations hit almost 20,000 and ICU 5,000. For the city, hospitalizations went a bit over 5,000 and ICU patients peaked around 2,500. All began declining in late April and have been declining since. Hospitalizations have fallen faster but are still more than double the number of ICU patients. On June 26, there were 908 hospitalized in the state and 230  in the ICU in the state. There were 473 hospitalized in the city and 118 in the ICU in the city.

Over time, serious cases of COVID will put patients in the hospital, and once they’re unable to breath on their own, into the Intensive Care Unit. Before the crisis, New York State had approximately 53,000 hospital beds and 3,000 ICU beds. On April 9th, Governor Cuomo said projections indicated the state’s current stock of 90K beds appeared to be adequate.

Deaths

A line graph showing the number of total COVID-19 deaths in New York City and New York State. New York State does not record the amount of probable deaths related to COVID-19 while New York City started recording the amount of probable deaths and confirmed deaths due to COVID-19 on April 14th. This accounts for the spike in deaths the city recorded by 40%. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 14, 2020 to June 26, 2020. The y-axis is deaths ranging from 0 to 25,000. On June 27, there were 24,830 deaths in New York State, 22,441 confirmed and probable deaths in New York City, of which 17,779 were confirmed cases in New York City.

Tracking deaths is complicated. New York State’s Department of Health only records a “confirmed” COVID death when the patient has had a positive COVID test. This may omit a large number of people who died at home, or at a hospital without a test. New York City has a different process for recording deaths. On April 14th, the NYC Department of Health began reporting “probable deaths”- people who had COVID listed as a cause of death on their death certificates, in addition to deaths of people with confirmed COVID tests. This raised the number of COVID deaths in the city by about 40%. This still may not include all COVID deaths, as more seemingly unrelated deaths may eventually be classified as caused by COVID. From February 1 through June 13, the CDC estimates there have been about 25,000 excess deaths in the City, compared to historical averages. The graph above uses the NYS DOH number for the NYS total, and the NYC DOH numbers for the NYC totals.

Bar chart showing the number of new deaths recorded by New York State and New York City. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 14, 2020 to June 26, 2020. The y-axis is deaths ranging from 0 to 1,000. The trend has been going steadily down from May 6. On April 14 there was a spike in new New York City deaths to account for the addition of probable deaths. On May 6, there was a spike in new New York State deaths due to an addition of nursing home deaths. On June 26, there were 16 new deaths in New York State and 26 new deaths in New York City.

New deaths in New York State peaked on April 9th and have been falling since then, although not as fast as they rose. Note: on May 6th, New York State added “probable” deaths from nursing homes (although not from other sources)- this resulted in an anomalous increase of about 700 deaths. These deaths occurred during a 9 week period beginning on March 1. New York City’s daily new death total, as reported by the NYC Department of Health, largely tracks the state’s pattern, but after 4/14 includes “probable” deaths.

Line chart showing total deaths by each borough. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 22, 2020  to June 27, 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases by 2,000 topping at 8,000. Each borough is assigned a colored line.Queens and The Bronx have increased while Staten Island, Brooklyn and Manhattan have decreased. The boroughs in order by total cases are Brooklyn (7020), Queens (6,600), Bronx (4,675), Manhattan (3,062), and then Staten Island (1,041).

When viewed by borough, Queens and Brooklyn have had the most deaths.

Line chart showing deaths  per capita for each  borough so they can be compared with a control on population The x-axis is dates ranging from March 22, 2020  to June 27, 2020 and the y-axis is the total number of cases per 100,000 population. The scale is by 196,484 and tops at 300.  Each borough is assigned a colored line. All have increased but the increase has started to slow. The boroughs in order of cases per 100,000 are Bronx (327), Queens (290),  Brooklyn (278), Staten Island (218.6), and Manhattan (188).

However, once we normalize the death count by population of each borough, the Bronx turns out to have a significantly higher death rate than Queens.

Line chart showing fatality rate by each borough. The x-axis is dates ranging from March 22, 2020  to June 27, 2020 and the y-axis is the death rate in percent, up to 12.50%. Each borough is assigned a colored line. All have increased but seem to be flattening. Brooklyn has the highest death rate, at 12% followed by Manhattan at 11.5%. Staten island has the lowest death rate, around 7.5%. All others fall around 10%.

By dividing the total number of deaths by the total number of positive cases, we can calculate the Case Fatality Rate per borough. Currently Brooklyn and Manhattan have much higher rates than the other three boroughs. Note: the CFR should not be confused with the overall fatality rate of COVID-19, which would include all people infected with the coronavirus- it is estimated at 0.5% to 1%.

Heat map showing highest deaths per capita in the five boroughs. The map is broken down by by zip code and gets darker with higher death rates. Communities in Queens, South Brooklyn and the Bronx have higher death per capita rates than Manhattan. East New York, East Elmhurst, College Point, Corona and the East Bronx have some of the highest rates.

On May 18th, the city released data on deaths by zipcode. Neighborhoods with the most cases tended to have the highest numbers of deaths, but the maps of cases and deaths do not coincide exactly. We’ve made a larger version of the map where you can also examine case fatality rates by neighborhoods.

Scatterplot of covid related deaths per capita vs covid cases per capita. The x-axis is covid cases per 100,000 in the thousands from 1,000 to 4,000. The y-axis is covid-related death per 100,000 in the hundreds from 100 to 600. Each zipcode gets a dot with a color that corresponds with it’s borough. The scatterplot shows a strong positive correlation between the two.

We’ve created a set of scatterplots exploring the correlations between deaths and positive cases, as well as other demographic factors, across the NYC zip codes. You can read more about our findings in a post on Gothamist.

Demographics of COVID Deaths by Age and Underlying Conditions

Chart showing the demographics of those who have died from confirmed cases of COVID-19. The chart is broken down by age, sex, and borough and whether or not the person had underlying conditions. Overall, most of the people who have died have had underlying conditions. For age group, those 75 or over are most at risk. Males are at higher risk than females. Queens and the Bronx have been the boroughs with the most deaths.

Each day the New York City Department of Health releases demographic data on COVID-19 deaths. The majority of those who die of COVID are aged 65+ and/or those with pre-existing health conditions, which the DOH defines as: “Diabetes, Lung Disease, Cancer, Immunodeficiency, Heart Disease, Hypertension, Asthma, Kidney Disease, and GI/Liver Disease.” Note: these demographics include “confirmed” COVID cases only, and exclude “probable” deaths.

Chart showing the demographics of those who have died from confirmed cases of COVID-19. The chart is broken down by age, sex, and borough and whether or not the person had underlying conditions. Overall, most of the people who have died have had underlying conditions. For age group, those 75 or over are most at risk. Males are at higher risk than females. Queens has been the borough with the most deaths.

The New York City case fatality rate has been around 10% overall, but older people have died at much higher rates than other groups.

A three part bar graph showing severity of cases per capita based on race. One section is race and those that tested positive but weren’t hospitalized. The next section is race and non-fatal hospitalizations, and then confirmed and probable COVID deaths. All have x axes that are per capita cases in increments of 200 up to 800. Latinos have the highest per capita cases in all three categories, followed by African Americans.

African-American and Latino New Yorkers have been diagnosed, hospitalized, and died at rates much higher than those for Whites and Asians.

Comparing New York City to Other Hard Hit Areas

Line chart that compares New York City’s cases per capita to other cities including New Orleans, Madrid, Detroit, Lombardy and LA. The x-axis is days since the one hundred thousandth case case and the y-axis is cases per 100,000 ranging from 50 to 2,000. NYC has more case per capita at 100 days out from our one hundred thousandth case. The next closest cases per capita at 100 days was Sao Paulo with close to 1,800 and climbing. While most of the other cities like New Orleans and Detroit saw a flattening of the curve earlier, New York is slowly beginning to flatten.

New York is currently the world epicenter of the COVID outbreak, outpacing even the most affected cities in Italy and Spain. The New York Times also has a good infographic comparing world cities.

What Will Happen Next?

Line chart that projects COVID-19 related deaths in New York State. The x-axis is dates from Jan 1 to July 01. The y-axis is deaths per day in increments of 100,000 up to 1,000,000. There is a solid line for the deaths per day that have happened and a dotted line that projects deaths per day for the coming weeks. According to this projection, we hit the peak in April and should be trending downwards. For early June the deaths are projected at 100 a day and trending down to almost 0 in early July.

There are many models that predict the future of the outbreak, but Governor Cuomo has repeatedly praised the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation’s COVID-19 model. In their 6/24 update, the model predicted an apex on April 9th, with deaths falling to near zero in July, with total deaths of 31,387 in New York State.




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