Go read this deep dive on why US public health data systems couldn’t handle COVID-19

Go read this deep dive on why US public health data systems couldn’t handle COVID-19


Public health data systems in the United States are out of date, underfunded, and can’t communicate with each other. Those issues left states unable to keep track of COVID-19 spread, and during surges, many local health departments stopped contact tracing, according to a new investigation from Politico.

The deep-dive look at the gaps in public health surveillance shows breakdowns at nearly every step in the process. Labs that ran COVID-19 tests didn’t report data directly to health departments through electronic systems, instead using faxes or emails. Health departments used different systems to track different types of outbreaks and relied on programs that required laborious, manual entry. They couldn’t get information about cases…

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