Health departments can’t just flick a switch — or gaze into the bottom of a toilet bowl — and suddenly get comprehensive COVID-19 trends from wastewater. This piece, a collaboration between the Documenting COVID-19 project and FiveThirtyEight, explains the challenges researchers and health officials are facing.
This retrospective piece walks through the metrics that the U.S. has attempted to use for tracking COVID-19 over the last two years, and how the country’s fractured public health system doomed each one.
The Delta wave in Idaho overwhelmed hospitals in the state and led to record patient transfers. This story, a collaboration between the Idaho Capital Sun and Documenting COVID-19, discusses the surge as a case study of the U.S.’s decentralized hospital system.
A K-12 COVID-19 testing program originally pioneered in Utah failed to prevent transmission in schools during the fall 2021 semester, after it was neutered by the state legislature. This story was a collaboration between the Salt Lake Tribune and Documenting COVID-19.
As Omicron surges everywhere in the U.S. at once, it’s hard to identify the most important hot spots: in other words, those among the people most vulnerable to severe disease and most capable of shutting down society.
School districts that successfully brought students back while keeping COVID-19 cases low in the 2020-2021 school year faced a new set of challenges in fall 2021, ranging from tricky quarantine policies to staff burnout.
Missouri officials lobbied the CDC for additional funding to distribute gift cards to residents who got vaccinated, but only 20 out of 115 eligible local health departments opted into the program. This project was a collaboration between the Missouri Independent and Documenting COVID-19.
If the U.S. doesn’t comprehensively track its own data, it has to rely on other countries to tell it how to keep Americans safe. Meanwhile, without clear evidence, many Americans have been confused about whether they need a booster shot.
An investigation, based on hundreds of public records, revealed how miscommunication and a lack of preparedness hurt Southwest Missouri’s ability to address the Delta surge in summer 2021. This project was a collaboration between the Missouri Independent and Documenting COVID-19.
Popular Science talked to six experts from around the world, all of whom agreed that the major pharmaceutical companies that developed COVID-19 vaccines have limited amounts they can supply to lower income companies.