In an attempt to make the publicly released COVID-19 data more useful, the Department of Public Health has reorganized the daily "dashboard" that reports on new cases, testing and other metrics, and the department on Monday will begin reporting on case growth by age group and the impact of university testing on broader state trends, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders said.
Sudders said the new daily report will also allow researchers and members of the public view trend lines that go back to March and also for the past six weeks.
"As our understanding of the pandemic in the state has evolved, certain data metrics become more useful and other metrics less so when seeking to understand the current impact of COVID on our state," Sudders said at a State House press conference with Gov. Charlie Baker.
The separating out of COVID-19 case growth by age coincides with recent warnings from the administration that spread among people under 30 has become more prevalent that among those over 60, which is a reverse from the early days of the pandemic.
Baker announced a new set of curfews and gathering size limits on Monday in an attempt to reduce the frequency of parties and private social events that the administration has blamed for the uptick in cases since the weather forced more people indoors.
"As we've seen, people testing positive for COVID is a much younger population compared to April," Sudders said.
The new daily reports are now expected to be published by 5 p.m. every day, which is an hour later than they are usually posted online. The weekly public health report, which includes information on community level virus spread and the origin of COVID-19 clusters, will also be reformatted, Sudders said, but the raw data will continue to be available.