Officials: Backlogged data led to spike in Alabama coronavirus cases

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Virus Outbreak Testing Data

FILE – In this May 20, 2020, file photo, Salt Lake County Health Department public health nurse Lee Cherie Booth performs a coronavirus test outside the Salt Lake County Health Department in Salt Lake City. Public health officials have said robust testing for the coronavirus is essential to safely lifting stay-at-home orders and business closures, but states are creating confusion in the way they are reporting the data. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama counties saw a large increase in coronavirus cases earlier this week because of backlogged data.

AL.com quotes officials from the Alabama Department of Public Health as saying that the high one or two-day increases seen in some counties were due to new testing facilities not reporting information regularly to the agency. The agency says it has “long-term reporting relationships” with many labs but that isn’t always the case with new testing facilities.

The agency says it wasn’t aware of some of the new labs and those labs weren’t familiar with “mandatory reporting of notifiable diseases.” But the agency said it is working on the problem.


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