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CDC Announces Termination of Community Transmission and Community Level Metrics

Due to changes in reporting requirements for case data following the end of the federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) on May 11th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that it will no longer be able to calculate COVID-19 Community Levels (CCLs). CCLs will be sunset and removed from the CDC COVID Data Tracker (CDT) on May 11th. The CDC will provide a new metric for people, organizations, and communities who want information on current COVID-19 risk to help their decision-making. The agency will focus on weekly tracking key public health outcomes as part of an ongoing transition from the emergency phase of COVID-19 response to sustainable public health practice, prioritizing tracking markers of severe illness using surveillance systems with national coverage. Phase 1 changes to the CDT will launch on May 11th.

Community Transmission rates (which guide masking requirements and other mitigation measures for nursing homes and other health care settings) and CCLs (which guide the general public in determining mitigation measures) will both sunset with the end of the PHE. These metrics will be replaced by a new metric that will be used to determine mitigation strategies, but no information on the new metric is available at this time. The CDC is determining how to address health care guidance without the use of Transmission Levels.

The CDC is adapting the way they share information with partners to better meet their communication needs. In addition to providing continuing updates on expected changes to surveillance activities and data visualizations/reporting, they will now be distributing a weekly COVID-19 PHE Partner Update. The update is responsive to partner feedback and will provide:

  • Updates on key CDC activities affected by the end of the PHE, how they will change, and when;
  • Reminders on key CDC activities that are NOT affected by the end of the PHE;
  • An overview of topics outside of the CDC’s domain and related resources; and
  • Weekly CDC PHE Talking Points.

LeadingAge NY is also awaiting Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and guidance from the NYS Department of Health (DOH) and will share with members once received.

Contact: Amy Nelson, anelson@leadingageny.org, 518-867-8383 ext. 146