Auditor: Covid Reporting Could Be Improved, Ask DHSS To Provide Greater Information Access

Delaware State Auditor Kathy McGuiness published a special report titled Delaware’s COVID-19 Data Dashboard Opportunities and Successes: How Well Does Delaware’s Data Tool Allow for an Accurate and Timely Response to the Pandemic, which focuses on the state’s approach to collecting and reporting on coronavirus case data in the early stages of the pandemic.

The report utilizes information obtained on the state’s websites, specifically its data dashboard – used to publish coronavirus case data to determine how Delaware’s approach to virus mitigation compares to best practices and tools promoted by other states.

“Ensuring Delaware is making decisions and developing its virus response on sound, quality data is vital to our success in keeping the public safe and spending resources appropriately, said McGuiness. This report is meant to commend the state in areas where it’s doing well and shine a light on opportunities for improvement.”

The report addresses 15 essential indicators that a group led by former CDC Director, Dr. Frieden regarded as necessary for success that served as the benchmark. Although the report concentrates on the state’s initial response to control the virus, it also acknowledges the improvements made to collect and report information over time.

“Our hope is that the state will consider our recommendations to enhance internal controls, communications, and monitoring to improve even further because this fight is not over and no state should have to be an island,” said McGuiness. “Collaboration is key.”

I acknowledge that Delaware is in the midst of a health and fiscal emergency, but as the state’s fiscal watchdog it is my duty to ensure quality data drives decision-making and communications are transparent particularly when it involves the people’s money. This report includes areas my office identified for improvement. I’m hopeful the necessary controls will be put in place for better data and better decisions, both for state government and the public.

“I look forward to DHSS’s response to provide a fuller understanding and to grant us greater information access to perform our due diligence. Improvement comes only when we know what needs
improving.”, added McGuiness.

Read full report here

Source: State Auditor

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