Explaining Alabama’s new color coded COVID-19 map

Updated: Jul. 1, 2020 at 2:34 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Alabama Department of Public Health introduced a new feature on its COVID-19 dashboard to help people better understand the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in their communities.

“One of the challenges ADPH has been working to overcome is making its data more accessible to the public,” said State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris on Tuesday. ADPH has had county level data for weeks, “but it can be super difficult to interpret.”

ADPH is now using a color coded map of the state’s 67 counties that features four colors to give a visual look at current conditions.

[ADPH color coded county dashboard]

  • Red: Very high risk
  • Orange: High risk
  • Yellow: Moderate risk
  • Green: Low risk

Each county’s risk color is determined by the number of new cases recorded in that county. So, if a county’s case count is increasing or staying the same for example, it will be colored as red, which classifies it as “high risk.”

According to ADPH, if a county has decreasing case counts for one to six days, they will be designated “high risk” with the color orange.

If a county is in a downward trajectory for seven to 13 days, they will be designated “moderate risk” in yellow.

State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris said Tuesday that counties represented by green have had their case numbers decreasing over a two-week period.

Montgomery, which previously led the state in COVID-19 cases, is listed on the color code map as moderate risk. Three counties in the area are listed as “low risk” and include Lowndes, Crenshaw, and Geneva counties.

Meanwhile, Dallas, Autauga, Elmore, Lee, Russell, and Barbour are all listed as high risk.

While green is considered low risk, Harris cautions that does not mean a county is in the clear. Residents should continue to follow practices that allowed the numbers to decrease.

Harris says the maps can also help schools, courts and businesses in a community get an idea of how they are doing it and how to proceed.

As of Wednesday, the state added 906 new COVID-19 cases, 51 of those in Montgomery and 177 in Jefferson County, which continues to lead the state in COVID-19 cases.

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