Wyoming, New Mexico and Arkansas record highest number of people with Covid-19 symptoms: Facebook survey
Wyoming, one of the few without stay-at-home orders, tops the list of states reporting Covid-19 symptoms, shows Facebook's Covid-19 Interactive Map and Dashboard. The other states with high reports of Covid-19 symptoms include New Mexico, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, Indiana, Arakhanas, Lousiana, Alabama, and Mississippi.
About 1.25% of Wyoming residents are showing signs of the disease, says the data. The state has confirmed nearly 700 positive cases after conducting 15,430 tests as of Thursday, according to the Covid-19 Tracking project. To launch this symptom tracking map, Facebook teamed up with Carnegie Mellon University’s Delphi epidemiological research center in April. The set out with the initiative hoping that it could provide a clear picture of how the virus is spreading in every state and predict the future course.
"The real-time estimates we have derived correlate with the best available data on Covid-19 activity, which gives us confidence that we may soon be able to give health care officials forecasts of disease activity that is likely to occur in their localities several weeks into the future,” Ryan Tibshirani, co-lead on Carnegie Mellon University’s Delphi Covid-19 Response Team, said in a statement.
The map draws data from Facebook surveys. For that, the team invites people on Facebook and asks them questions about how they are feeling, including listing symptoms such as fever and either a cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing. Additionally, the map also includes information about their family members.
“Getting accurate county-by-county data from across the United States is challenging, and obtaining such focused data from across the whole world is even harder,” Mark Zuckerberg wrote in Op-ed appearing in Washington Post. He explained how his company is uniquely positioned to conduct such surveys.
Insights from the map
Ranking after Wyoming is New Mexico. About 0.88% of its 2.1 million people said they have Covid-19 signs. The state, which has about 5,364 confirmed cases, has eased some restrictions on May 1. In Arkansas, 0.73% of the three million population are experiencing symptoms and it comes third in the list. A close fourth is Alabama and Indiana, followed by Mississippi. The tracker said 0.68%, 0.67%, and 0.61% of the people in Idaho, Louisiana and Minnesota are reporting the symptoms listed.
The survey comes after an unpublished White House report, accessed by NBC News, found emerging hotspots of coronavirus infections. The report contradicted Trump's claim of a drop in cases. According to the report, the emerging super hotspots are Tennessee's Trousdale County and Kansas' Leavenworth County, with both recording more than 1,000% spike in cases in a week, over the previous week. The report contains data collected between April 29 and May 6.
Coronavirus cases are rapidly rising in Minnesota, Washington, DC, New Hampshire, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Nebraska, Kansas, Maryland, Illinois and Iowa.
Dr Anthony Fauci, a member of the Coronavirus Task Force, told a US Senate panel reportedly said: “I think we’re going in the right direction, but the right direction does not mean we have by any means total control of this outbreak."