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Coronavirus hospital capacity dashboard disappears from CDC website

A coronavirus hospital capacity dashboard on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) website is now hidden from the public. 

The dashboard is regularly updated with the availability of hospital beds across the country as a way to monitor hospitals’ capacities, but the data set disappeared from CDC’s website on Wednesday, as first spotted by ProPublica journalist Charles Ornstein. 

The information lived on the National Healthcare Safety Network’s COVID-19 module page and the CDC’s COVID-19 data tracker. The webpage now displays a message that says: “Data displayed on this page was submitted directly to CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) and does not include data submitted to other entities contracted by or within the federal government.”

The data includes information on current inpatient and intensive care unit bed occupancy, health care staffing, and protective equipment supply, according to CNN. The information was previously available to the public and was used frequently by health care workers, public health officials, and researchers to determine how well a particular area is doing against coronavirus cases. 

On July 10, new guidance was introduced by the Trump administration to reroute the information directly to the White House and bypass the CDC. The new directive went into effect on Wednesday, July 15. 

Digital Trends reached out to the CDC and the Department of Health and Human Services for comment. We will update this story when we hear back. 

There are other popular online tools used to track coronavirus data, such as the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 dashboard, that provide detailed, up-to-date statistics about infection rates in states and countries.

The latest confirmed coronavirus case numbers in the U.S. are 3.53 million, and there have been 138,000 coronavirus deaths. 

For the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak, visit the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 page.

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