Officials watch this number to see whether preventive measures such as stay-home orders are slowing the virus down.
The state wants a county to have an R0 of no more than 1 before it moves to a new phase of the Safe Start reopening plan.
Is it proportional?
Demographic data is important because it shows how the virus could be having an outsized impact on specific portions of a population.
It was obvious early on in the pandemic that COVID-19 was affecting older people and those with underlying health conditions more than the general population.
Like many diseases, COVID-19 has also affected Black people and Latinos disproportionately compared to their share of the population. For example, as of mid-June, people of color in King County are getting COVID-19, and being hospitalized for it, at higher rates than white residents. They are also, largely, more likely to die from the disease than their white counterparts.
Seattle Times staff reporter Hal Bernton contributed to this report.
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