Florida’s reopening Phase 2 marks end of daily state issued COVID-19 updates

As Florida reopens and increases activity, the COVID-19 dashboard launched on March 16th to keep Florida citizens, researchers and media informed of case trends is set to be absorbed by the Department of Health.

And according to Florida Today, the architect and manager of Florida’s dashboard, Rebekah Jones, “announced that she had been removed from her post, causing outcry from independent researchers now worried about government censorship.”

The dashboard was debuted by the state and heralded as “part of the state’s ongoing efforts to provide transparency and clarity regarding COVID-19,” in the announcement of the March 16th launch.

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“To keep Florida residents and visitors safe, informed and aware about the status of the virus, this dashboard will be updated twice daily,” was the initial data cycle.

Soon after the Florida specific dashboard went liver, zip code searches were announced that allowed users to search for local case data.

Now, two months later, the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) has announced in a daily email briefing that outlines statewide programs and activities concerning COVID-19 policies and includes a link to the Florida dashboard will soon be updated once a week, and the information Florida Covid-19 dashboard will be absorbed by the Department of Health (DOH).

“The Florida Department of Health will continue to issue this update every day through Phase 1 of Florida’s reopening plan,” the announcement states. “Once the state moves into Phase 2, DOH will provide this update once per week. However, DOH will continue to update the COVID-19 dashboard and post the state report daily.”

The database has been used by citizens, community leaders and media to follow the path of COVID-19 as policies and decisions about have been made based on case trends.

Alachua County Communications Director Mark Sexton who presented a similar Alachua County COVID-19 Recovery dashboard to the Alachua Board of County Commissioners last week said, “This tool is a great way to keep track, daily, on what is happening locally and statewide.  We share it daily on our social media sites and our citizens use it extensively.”

County recovery dashboard here: https://dashboards.alachuacounty.us/COVID19/ 

Florida Dashboard: https://fdoh.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/8d0de33f260d444c852a615dc7837c86




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