With a steadily available supply of COVID-19 global data, it has become equally important that data on a local level is made accessible. Writer Tom Nardi has composed an article outlining five ways to wangle local, granular data.
Scrape CDC Data
The first tip Nardi offers is to take advantage of the wealth of open data on offer from the CDC website. He cautions that there is not currently an API to pull raw data from, and offers an alternative a break down for how to scrape the web page with a few lines of Python.
Reference the Unofficial API from Johns Hopkins
The Johns Hopkins API has become ground zero for COVID-19 data. The data is sourced globally and updated consistently throughout the day. Granular data can be accessed through an API built by French data scientist Omar Laraqui. His build allows users to poll the database rather than requiring a complete download of the data.
Virus Tracker API
Before getting into the API, Nardi cautions that he discovered warning signs that this tool is capitalizing on a disaster and that the site crashes frequently. Barring those deterrents, he recommends the site as “easy to use and gives you a number of very convenient data points that don’t seem to be available from other sources.”
Feature-Rich COVID Tracking Project
Launched in March by a team of journalists, this project “is committed to collecting accurate information not only from state and district health agencies, but from a network of trusted local reporters.” A unique feature within the project is the tally for both who has been tested for the virus, as well as who has been cleared. Along with the tally, feature are the historical and geographical data. Nardi cautions that though the breadth of information is excellent, the data updates aren’t pushed quite as frequently as the other resources in this roundup.
Nardi’s Own API
Nardi's roundup concludes with an explanation of his own project, created to provide rigorous visibility into current US cases, and in order to get a better grip on the margin of error. This dashboard is open for use here.