Ohio and West Virginia border seeing surge of COVID-19 cases

As the United States is seeing a landmark 14.8 million COVID-19 cases, many once unaffected areas are now seeing serious surges. On the Ohio-West Virginia border, cases are growing by upwards of 400%. Jefferson County, OH and Hancock County, W.Va, are ranked as the third-highest in the country when it comes to cases rising fastest by population. The chart below will show that these areas have not dealt with a surplus of cases until most recently, with the tick coming in November and continuing on the upward rise.

To better understand the areas, Jefferson and Hancock Counties border one another along the Ohio-West Virginia border. The two counties’ biggest cities, Steubenville (OH) and Weirton (W.Va.), are about 10 minutes from one another, providing easy access to each, allowing travel between them. West Virginia is currently not on Ohio’s travel advisory as the state has a 7-percent positivity rate, compared to Ohio’s 15-percent.

Explanation of work:

I started by researching Jefferson and Hancock counties’ COVID-19 data on the respective state’s public dashboard. After tallying that data, I imported it into Flourish to create a comparative line chart. My goal was to show how both counties have been on the downward slope with COVID since the start of the pandemic, until most recently, with the high tick in cases beginning mid-November. For those who may not be familiar with the area, I then proceeded to Google Maps to better visualize where we are talking about. Throughout my work, helpful links to each state’s dashboard, a running count of the country’s cases, and further information on the local counties standings are all hyperlinked at different points of my explanations in between each visualization.