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created Feb 3 2021

updated Oct 1 2021

Description

This case surveillance public use dataset has 19 elements for all COVID-19 cases shared with CDC and includes demographics, geography (county and state of residence), any exposure history, disease severity indicators and outcomes, and presence of any underlying medical conditions and risk behaviors.
Currently, CDC provides the public with three versions of COVID-19 case surveillance line-listed data: this 19 data element dataset with geography, a 12 data element public use dataset, and a 32 data element restricted access dataset.
The following apply to the public use datasets and the restricted access dataset:
- Data elements can be found on the COVID-19 case report form located at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/pui-form.pdf.
- Data are considered provisional by CDC and are subject to change until the data are reconciled and verified with the state and territorial data providers.
- Some data are suppressed to protect individual privacy.
- Datasets will include all cases with the earliest date available in each record (date received by CDC or date related to illness/specimen collection) at least 14 days prior to the creation of the previously updated datasets. This 14-day lag allows case reporting to be stabilized and ensure that time-dependent outcome data are accurately captured.
- Datasets are updated monthly.
- Datasets are created using CDC’s Policy on Public Health Research and Nonresearch Data Management and Access and include protections designed to protect individual privacy.
- For more information about data collection and reporting, please see wwwn.cdc.gov/nndss/data-collection.html.
- For more information about the COVID-19 case surveillance data, please see www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/faq-surveillance.html.
Overview
The COVID-19 case surveillance database includes patient-level data reported by U.S. states and autonomous reporting entities, including New York City and the District of Columbia (D.C.), as well as U.S. territories and affiliates. On April 5, 2020, COVID-19 was added to the Nationally Notifiable Condition List and classified as "immediately notifiable, urgent (within 24 hours)" by a Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) Interim Position Statement (Interim-20-ID-01). CSTE updated the position statement on August 5, 2020 to clarify the interpretation of antigen detection tests and serologic test results within the case classification (Interim-20-ID-02). The statement also recommended that all states and territories enact laws to make COVID-19 reportable in their jurisdiction, and that jurisdictions conducting surveillance should submit case notifications to CDC. COVID-19 case surveillance data collected by jurisdictions are shared voluntarily with CDC.
For more information, visit: wwwn.cdc.gov/nndss/conditions/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/case-definition/2020/08/05/.
COVID-19 Case Reports
COVID-19 case reports are routinely submitted to CDC by public health jurisdictions using nationally standardized case reporting forms. On April 5, 2020, CSTE released an Interim Position Statement with national surveillance case definitions for COVID-19. Current versions of these case definitions are available at wwwn.cdc.gov/nndss/conditions/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/. All cases reported on or after were requested to be shared by public health departments to CDC using the standardized case definitions for lab-confirmed or probable cases. On May 5, 2020, the standardized case reporting form was revised. States and territories continue to use this form.
Data are Considered Provisional
- COVID-19 case surveillance data are dynamic; case reports can be modified at any time by the jurisdictions sharing COVID-19 data with CDC. CDC may update prior cases based on any updated information from jurisdictions. For instance, health departments provide updated data to CDC as new information is gathered about previously reported cases. As more information and data become available, analyses might find changes in surveillance data and trends during a previously reported time window. Data may also be shared late with CDC due to the volume of COVID-19 cases.
- Annual finalized data: To create the final NNDSS data used in the annual tables, CDC works carefully with the reporting jurisdictions to reconcile data received during the year until each state or territorial epidemiologist confirms that the data from their area are correct.
Data Limitations
To learn more about the limitations in using case surveillance data, visit FAQ: COVID-19 Data and Surveillance.
Data Quality Assurance Procedures
CDC’s Case Surveillance Section routinely performs data quality assurance procedures (i.e., ongoing corrections and logic checks to address data errors). To date, the following data cleaning steps have been implemented:
- Questions that have been left unanswered (blank) on the case report form are reclassified to a Missing value, if applicable to the question. For example, in the question "Was the individual hospitalized?" where the possible answer choices include "Yes," "No," or "Unknown," the blank value is recoded to "Missing" because the case report form did not include a response to the question.
- Logic checks are performed for date data. If an illogical date has been provided, CDC reviews the data with the reporting jurisdiction. For example, if a symptom onset date in the future is reported to CDC, this value is set to null until the reporting jurisdiction updates the date appropriately.
- Additional data quality processing to recode free text data are ongoing. Data on symptoms, race and ethnicity, and healthcare worker status have been prioritized.
Data Suppression
To prevent release of data that could be used to identify people, data cells are suppressed for low frequency (<11 COVID-19 case records with a given values). Suppression includes low frequency combinations of case month, geographic characteristics (county and state of residence), and demographic characteristics (sex, age group, race, and ethnicity). Suppressed values are re-coded to the NA answer option; records with data suppression are never removed.
Additional COVID-19 Data
COVID-19 data are available to the public as summary or aggregate count files, including total counts of cases and deaths by state and by county. These and other COVID-19 data are available from multiple public locations: COVID Data Tracker; United States COVID-19 Cases and Deaths by State; COVID Data Tracker Weekly Review; COVID-19 Surveillance and Data Analytics; COVID-19 Vaccination Reporting Data Systems; and COVID-19 Death Data and Resources.

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Category
Case Surveillance
Permissions
Public
Tags
covid-19, covid19, coronavirus, cases, surveillance, county, state, microdata
Row Label
Deidentified Patient Case
SODA2 Only
Yes
Common Core
Contact Name
Surveillance Review and Response Group
Contact Email
eocevent394@cdc.gov
Publisher
CDC
Public Access Level
public
References
https://data.cdc.gov/api/views/n8mc-b4w4/files/8c148e4b-ca9a-4633-9b80-cb4b1f13e5c7?download=true&filename=utility_summary_public_geo.pdf
Bureau Code
009:20
Program Code
009:020
Geographic Coverage
US
Temporal Applicability
2020-01-01/2021-09-12
Described By
https://data.cdc.gov/api/views/n8mc-b4w4/files/5245e8f8-d328-4bad-8dc3-4c3a80d73e36?download=true&filename=data_dictionary_covid_cases_public_geo.xlsx
Update Frequency
Every 2 weeks
Data Quality
Suggested Citation
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, COVID-19 Response. COVID-19 Case Surveillance Public Use Data with Geography (version date: September 28, 2021).
Geospatial Resolution
State, County
Analytical Methods Reference
https://github.com/CDCgov/covid_case_privacy_review
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