COVID-19 cases are trending downward in Kansas and the states that aren’t on mandatory lockdowns have fewer cases and deaths per capita, but Kansas Governor Laura Kelly apparently still plans to extend her stay-at-home order beyond April 19.
The chart below was prepared by Kansas Policy Institute, which owns the Sentinel. It tracks the daily percentage increase in new cases (show in red) reported by Worldometers.info with a 3-point moving average trendline. The percentage increase in new deaths is shown in blue, which is also trending down.
This chart shows the number of new cases and deaths since the beginning of April. So far, the peak in the number of new cases occurred on April 8, with 134 new cases. There were 60 new cases each of the next two days, followed by 102 cases on April 11, another 69 cases on April 12, just 39 cases yesterday, and 50 today.
No response from Governor Kelly
The Sentinel asked Governor Kelly’s office to respond to three questions related to the decidedly downward trends, but they didn’t respond so far. We asked:
- Given that there is a decidedly downward trend in the percentage increases of new COVID cases and deaths in Kansas, why are you considering extending your stay-at-home order?
- Many small business owners say the odds of their businesses failing and their employees losing jobs increases the longer the economy is on lockdown. How does that factor into your decision to extend the stay-at-home order?
- What specific measures must be met before lifting your stay-at-home order? Please answer in exact terms such as the number of days with declining rates of increase in new cases, rather than ‘when it’s safe.’
States without stay-at-home orders doing better than most
There are five states – North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, and Arkansas – that have no stay-at-home orders. Three others – Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Utah – have lockdowns in some metropolitan areas but not statewide. Through April 12, these eight states collectively are doing better than the states with full lockdowns.
The states on lockdown have more than three times as many cases per capita (1,836 vs. 569) and they have almost six times as many deaths per capita (75 vs. 13).
We’ll update this story if Governor Kelly responds to our questions.