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End Of Daily COVID Updates Doesn’t Change Much

It’s disappointing that Chautauqua County residents will no longer receive a daily update from their health department regarding new daily COVID-19 cases, but in the end the county’s decision doesn’t really mean that much.

Not having a daily update doesn’t change the number of cases in the county. We know there are cases – what the county really needed to be providing was context and guidance, which it wasn’t really providing anyway. Those interested can continue to receive daily updates from the NY Forward website at forward.ny.gov, which comes in a day later than the county numbers did but is still an excellent source of information. After 18 months, Chautauqua County residents should know COVID-19 is circulating here and that there are new cases every day.

The county’s change may also have an unexpected positive. Perhaps not updating the county Health Department’s COVID-19 tally daily means the Health Department can use its staff to better handle notifying families who have had a close contact or who have a confirmed positive COVID test. Being available to answer questions may mean school nurses aren’t a better source of quick information than our county Health Department. County residents need answers to their questions faster than three or four days, especially when those questions involve work schedules or child care for that afternoon or evening.

In our opinion, ending daily updates sends a signal to county residents that COVID-19 is waning and that life is returning to its pre-pandemic rhythms. We all know that isn’t true yet. Those who want the information aren’t in the dark, however — they just have to go to a different website.

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