Coronavirus Preparedness by State

This article is part of our Covid Count effort to better understand and share information around the COVID-19 pandemic. Covid Count was created as an effort of Ethos for Good, a philanthropic initiative started by Ethos Life.

Map A: Number of hospital beds per 1000 people per state

Map A: Number of hospital beds per 1000 people per state

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation

Chart A: Number of hospital beds per 1000 people per state

Chart A: Number of hospital beds per 1000 people per state

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation

Map B: % uninsured per state

Map B: % uninsured per state

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation

Chart B: % uninsured per state

Chart B: % uninsured per state

Source: Kaiser Family Foundation

We see that Washington, California, and New York are the most affected states as of March 25, 2020 in regards to the number of cases confirmed.

Looking at state-level data in a different light, we now turn to data that can tell us how prepared each state is to combat the coronavirus crisis. From data released by Kaiser Family Foundation, we see that California and Washington both have an average of 1.8 and 1.7 hospital beds per 1,000 population (respectively) — amongst the lowest in the nation. The number of hospital beds is a proxy for how much resource we have to treat severe patients — such as the number of ventilators available.

Another statistic to look into is the uninsured rates by state (Kaiser Family Foundation). The top 3 states that have the highest percentage of uninsured residents are Texas, Florida, and Oklahoma (20%, 16%, and 16% respectively). This is concerning as we see the number of confirmed cases rising in those states and it’s assumed that the spread would be undercounted if these uninsured groups are not tested and treated, due to lack of insurance. As of March 25, 2020, every state in the U.S. has reported cases of the coronavirus infections. The crisis is no longer Seattle-specific (the first case ever in the U.S. reported) or New York-specific (where the most number of cases has been reported) — it’s a national crisis.

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