OSDH shifts to weekly COVID-19 reports

Vicky O. Misa
The Shawnee News-Star
A masks-required sign in Shawnee reminds residents of the local COVID-19-related ordinance.

For those keeping track, updated data from the state health department has been stalled for nearly a week.

The agency's reports are being revamped. On Tuesday, just before the data figures froze, two Pottawatomie County deaths were recorded. It is unknown how many local deaths have occurred since then.

Last week, after a year of daily reports, the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) has now switched gears to offer weekly updates to the state’s COVID-19 data dashboard on its website. The new reporting starts Wednesday.

“A number of changes have been made, starting this week, to the state’s COVID-19 data dashboard. These changes are intended to better represent Oklahoma’s COVID-19 data to the public,” Joli Stone, Deputy State Epidemiologist said. “After a year of reporting daily numbers in many categories, with cases, deaths and hospitalizations all trending downward, and vaccination continuing to trend upward, we believe now is a good time to switch to weekly reporting. Data transparency has been, and will continue to be important to OSDH, no matter the cadence of reporting.”

Data will be updated on the dashboard each Wednesday.

The changes include:

Immunization data

  • The total vaccine doses administered figure now matches the CDC’s published total, which includes federally administered doses. For this reason, this figure will be larger than Oklahoma’s prime and boost doses combined, which only reflects the state administered doses.
  • The count of allocated vaccine doses to the state has been removed from the dashboard. As vaccine administration progresses, intricacies in reporting this data without extensive context mean it is not a consistently accurate figure to reference.

CDC data

  • Cases from the CDC COVID tracker and 7-day case average have been added to the dashboard.
  • Deaths from CDC/NCHS provisional death certificate data (i.e., deaths with any mention of COVID-19) have been added to the dashboard.

OSDH case investigation data

  • All numbers in the section will now be updated on a weekly basis, rather than daily, along with the underlying dashboards and downloadable data.
  • This is a similar move like was recently made with COVID-19 death reporting
  • A daily case number will still be included Monday - Friday in the Situation Update.

The latest version of the dashboard can be found at https://oklahoma.gov/covid19.html.

For story ideas, questions or concerns, reporter Vicky O. Misa can be reached at vicky.misa@news-star.com.