Data Update

Massachusetts Data Update November 6,2020

This is the last post for this blog.  As many of you know, after election day, Covid disappeared. So there were no new cases, no new hospitalizations, and no new Covid deaths in Massachusetts today, nor will there be any going forward. There is no point in continuing this blog.

Just kidding of course. Unfortunately, the coronavirus news in Massachusetts is not good, and is continuing to get worse. The test positivity rate for newly tested individuals reached 7% today after being between 6% and 7% for twelve consecutive days. I’d been hoping we were at a plateau. No such luck. Positivity rates for higher education, which had been 0.1% throughout September and October, ticked up to 0.2%.  The number of tests each day continues to increase slightly, but the large increase in confirmed cases is not from increased testing, but from higher positivity.

Table 1: Massachusetts Testing Statistics
7 Day  Trailing Average
November 6, 2020
Testing Statistic   Current 7 Days Ago 4 Weeks Ago
Test Positivity Rate (Individuals)   7.1% 6.6% 3.6%
Test Positivity Rate (Include Suspected)   7.7% 7.0% 3.8%
Test Positivity Rate (All Tests)   2.1% 2.0% 1.1%
Test Positivity Rate (Newly Tested)   7.1% 6.6% 3.6%
Test Positivity Rate (Repeat Testers)   0.4% 0.4% 0.3%
Percentage Repeat Testers   74.9% 74.8% 73.8%
Test Positivity Rate (Higher Ed)   0.2% 0.1% 0.1%
Test Positivity Rate (Non Higher Ed)   3.8% 3.4% 2.1%
Percentage Higher Ed Testers   46.3% 43.9% 47.2%
Newly Tested (Lagged 1 Week)   17,761 16,607 15,917
Higher Ed Tests (Lagged 1 Week)   30,928 31,007 29,017
All Tests (Lagged 1 Week)   70,443 67,973 59,133


As test positivity and cases rise, hospitalizations follow.   The 7 day average count of hospitalized patients, patients in the ICU, and intubated patients all increased by almost 25% or more in one week.  Particularly disturbing is that over 50% of patients in the ICU are intubated, the highest rate since early September.


Table 2: Massachusetts Hospitalization Statistics
7 Day Trailing Average
November 6, 2020
Hospitalization Statistic   Current 7 Days Ago 4 Weeks Ago
Confirmed  Patients Hospitalized   477 387 285
Confirmed  Patients in ICU   101 79 55
Confirmed  Patients Intubed   52 40 21
Net New Confirmed Patients   15 6 8
Net New ICU Patients   5 0 1
Net New Intubated Patients   2 1 0
 Percent ICU / Hospitalized   21% 21% 19%
 Percent Intubated / ICU   51% 50% 38%


Over 2000 new cases were reported today, and the 7 day average of new confirmed cases topped 1300, the highest amount since mid-May.  Deaths are holding steady.  It is unclear whether this is because of the lag from diagnosis to death, or because the current batch of covid patients is healthier compared to the spring. 


Table 3: Massachusetts Reported Case and Death Statistics
7 Day Trailing Average
November 6, 2020
Statistic   Current 7 Days Ago 4 Weeks Ago
Total Deaths Including Suspected   19 21 12
Total  Deaths Confirmed Only   19 20 12
Deaths in Long-Term Facilities (All Cases)   9 12 12
Percent from Long-Term Care   50% 56% 93%
Total Cases Including Suspected   1448 1269 581
Total Confirmed Cases   1358 1191 542


4 replies on “Massachusetts Data Update November 6,2020”

I can’t thank you enough for this report. It is such a service to the community to have a source of honest information here. Thank you. I can’t say it enough: We are grateful!

I’m giving up on following certain data released by the city and by the state because we seem to be in a completely different environment now, with the virus seemingly increasing in every way shape and form and nothing to examine, dissect, analyze, and discuss. Meaning, it’s no longer that interesting (or, helpful) to figure out how the virus is spreading (and, not spreading) since it’s spreading everywhere.

Hospitalizations seem a lost cause, data-wise, so why try to figure it out, I say. It’s just going up.

One thing that I think will become important to track during the coming days and weeks is the ratio of long-term care facility deaths and those occurring outside them. I think the ratio has been going down during the past three weeks or so, actually. We’re about to go below 64% LTC to non-LTC deaths and I think we’ve seen consistently that the number of non-LTC has outpaced LTC deaths for the past two weeks or longer.

I agree on deaths in long-term care. Good news. However, if the deaths in long-term care facilities are going down (I had also previously noted this in the blog), and deaths are holding steady, this implies that the deaths outside of long-term care are going up. Not a good thing, as these people are presumably on average healthier.

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