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Beyer Introduces COVID-19 Data Transparency Act

Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) today introduced the COVID-19 Data Transparency Act, which would codify standards for state, tribal, and local health departments to report statistical information to the Centers For Disease Control (CDC), and require CDC to share that information with the public. The legislation came as the Trump Administration continued to meddle with federal government systems that report public health data during the ongoing global pandemic.

“The American people deserve transparent, accurate public health data about the spread of COVID-19, and policymakers need it in order to make informed decisions,” said Beyer. “From the beginning of this pandemic, President Trump and his Administration have ignored science and interfered with communication to the American people about the impact of this disease for political purposes. State governments, including Florida and Georgia, have followed their example. We simply cannot trust them not to interfere with public health data, and must therefore provide codified guardrails that specify and standardize the reporting of key information about the pandemic. That is what my bill would accomplish.”

The COVID-19 Data Transparency Act would require state, tribal, and local health departments to report key data metrics to the CDC, including:

  • Daily numbers of hospitalizations of patients with COVID-19
    • Daily numbers of such patients in the intensive care unit
    • Daily numbers of such patients on ventilators
    • How long such patients have been in the hospital
  • Daily numbers of diagnostic and serological tests administered for SARS–CoV–2 with respect to patients in the respective jurisdiction, disaggregated by the type of test, testing positivity rate, sensitivity and specificity of each type of test.
  • Daily numbers and percentages of contacts traced, and the rate of transmission of SARS–CoV–2

It would further require the CDC to post that information publicly.

Text of the COVID-19 Data Transparency Act is available here.