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7. There still aren’t federal standards for COVID-19 data

States initially struggled last year to report out seemingly basic information, such as turnaround times for testing and whether patients were interviewed for contract tracing. Nearly a year later, many of those gaps remain, while burgeoning vaccination efforts suffer similar lapses. Federal data standards have for months been proposed as a possible solution to the United States’ disjointed response effort, yet they’re only now being seriously considered in Washington. It took a partnership between tech rivals Google and Apple to create a contract-tracing app that emphasized interoperability, but the Biden administration’s pandemic response plan published last month recognized that gap in national strategy. The plan places a heavy emphasis on data collection and standardization, including helping state and local governments build platforms that are more interoperable and transparent.

This piece is part of StateScoop’s Special Report on Data & Analytics.

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