Weekly Update: Which COUNTIES have the highest per capita rates of #COVID19 cases and deaths?

COVID-19

The data below comes from the GitHub data repositories of Johns Hopkins University, except for Utah, which comes from the GitHub data of the New York Times due to JHU not breaking the state out by county but by "region" for some reason.

Important:

  • Every county except those in Alaska lists the 2020 Biden/Trump partisan lean; Alaska still uses the 2016 Clinton/Trump results (the 2020 Alaska results are only available by state legislative district, not by county/borough for some reason...if anyone has that info let me know)
  • I define a "Swing District" as one where the difference between Biden & Trump was less than 6.0%. FWIW, there's just 187 swing districts (out of over 3,100 total), with around 33.7 million Americans out of 332 million total, or roughly 10.2% of the U.S. population.
  • For the U.S. territories, Puerto Rico only includes the case breakout, not deaths, which are unavailable by county equivalent for some reason.

With those caveats in mind, here's the top 100 counties ranked by per capita COVID-19 cases as of Thursday, May 6th, 2021 (click image for high-res version).

  • Blue = Joe Biden won by more than 6 points
  • Orange = Donald Trump won by more than 6 points
  • Yellow = Swing District (Biden or Trump won by less than 6 points)

After months of Crowley County, CO having the highest per capita cumulative case total, Chattahoochee County, GA has taken over the #1 spot. 3,980 of their 10,907 residents have now tested positive for #COVID19, or 36.5% of their total population.

For what it's worth, the top 100 top counties voted for Donald Trump by 3.5 points.

Here's the top 100 counties ranked by per capita COVID-19 fatalities as of Thursday, May 6th, 2021 (click image for high-res version):

The #1 spot has been taken over by Foard County, Texas, where 10 out of the county's 1,155 residents have died of COVID-19, or 0.87%. That's 1 out of every 116 residents.

One other interesting and important change: For several months now, the 100 counties with the highest COVID-19 death rates voted for Donald Trump by around 20 points.

That stat completely reversed itself recently, as the 100 counties w/the highest COVID death rate have now voted for Joe Biden by over 20 points.

How? Easy: The Bronx has moved back up onto the Top 100 list due to the spike in the B.117 COVID-19 variant.

Given that voters in Bronx County, NY voted for Biden by a whopping 68 points and that the population of The Bronx is actually higher than the other 99 counties combined, this means that it completely flipped things around just like that.

A more accurate measurement of this is to look at how the ratio of per capita cases and mortality have shifted between the Blue and Red-leaning counties over time.

A year ago, the case rate was 450% higher and the mortality rate was 530% higher in blue counties than red counties (defined as counties which voted for Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump). Due to my updating most of the counties to reflect the 2020 results instead of 2016, the lines for both cases and deaths per capita jumped around a bit for a few weeks as I updated counties in all 50 states, but they've basically stabilized at the same rate since the beginning of 2021. Huh.

As of today, both cumulative COVID-19 Cases and Deaths per capita are running higher in the Red Counties:

  • Cumulative Cases per 1,000 residents: 6.3% higher in Red Counties
  • Cumulative Deaths per 10,000 residents: 2.7% higher in Red Counties

I've also taken a look at the counties with the lowest rates of COVID-19 cases and fatalities:

  • There are now just 46 counties nationwide which haven't reported any COVID-19 deaths as of yet.

Total combined population of these counties? 178,000 people.

  • There are only 4* counties nationwide which haven't reported any cases yet:
  • Bristol Bay Borough, Alaska
  • Hoonah-Angoon Census Area, Alaska
  • Valdez-Cordova Census Area, Alaska
  • Kalawao County, Hawaii

Total combined population of these counties? 12,272 people.