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California rolls out new coronavirus 'forecast' model at local level

Posted at 2:41 PM, Jun 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-25 17:41:54-04

Californians can get a better look at the coronavirus forecast in their county with a new tool rolled out by the state. It is called the California COVID Assessment Tool, or CalCAT.

In Thursday's press conference, Gov. Gavin Newsom said the site is intended to help increase transparency and make the data more meaningful.

"We want to open up our site to 'netizens' as it's often referred to. Of citizen scientists, people that are out there doing coding every single day, we want to give them access through an open-source platform to all of the available data that we have, that I have, that our health professionals have," Newsom said.

While the number of positive cases reported in 24 hours dropped, Newsom said the number is still not where health officials would like it to be.

Here’s some of the new data Newsom highlighted:

  • 5.6% positivity rate in the last seven days
  • 5,349 new cases Wednesday
  • Over 101,000 people tested Wednesday
  • 32% increase in COVID-19 hospitalization rate in past 14 days
  • 19% increase in COVID-19 ICU admissions over 14 days

The website offers three main sets of data. It includes NowCast, which gives the rate of spread of COVID-19. Scenarios, which show long-term scenarios estimating the effect of various non-pharmaceutical interventions. And short-term forecasts that take into account the most recent trends in cases, hospitalizations and deaths and apply statistical models to that data to generate anticipated trends in the coming 2-4 weeks.

In San Luis Obispo County, ensemble forecasts show a projected daily hospitalization rate of 17 and an additional 53 deaths over the next 30 days. San Luis Obispo, as of Thursday, has recorded one death from COVID-19.

Santa Barbara County, which has seen a significant spike in cases, shows an ensemble forecast of 74 daily hospitalizations over the next 30 days. The forecast also shows Santa Barbara could see 225 deaths related to COVID-1`9 in the next month. Currently the county has attributed 27 deaths as coronavirus-related.

You can view the website and data by clicking here.