Summer COVID-19 outbreak begins to take hold in Ga. but case numbers misleading

Epidemiologists from the White House to Atlanta’s own researchers said COVID’s spread is likely much worse than it appears on paper due to the prevalence of at-home tests and the number of infections that go unreported. Dr. Jayne Morgan, the executive director of Piedmont Healthcare COVID-19 task force, said infections are likely five to ten times higher than state reports, meaning Georgia is in the middle of a budding outbreak.

“We’re beyond missing the early signals,” she told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday. “We’ve passed that. We are sort of in it.”

The undercount is due to several factors. Many states, including Georgia, have begun publishing COVID-19 data on a weekly basis instead of daily, which could delay how quickly the public learns of increasing infections and hospitalizations. The recent reliance on at-home tests — spurred by a federal effort to increase test access — has also muddied the waters, because most positive at-home test results aren’t reported to state officials.

Source: Summer COVID-19 outbreak begins to take hold in Ga. but case numbers misleading