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What does the positivity rate tell us?

There are many ways to look at data. Positivity rates, any way they are calculated, is one way to look at data. It can provide an indication of whether adequate testing is going on. It can also be an early indication of increasing rates of infection. No matter how it is calculated, the trends appear to be similar. It tells us the percent of people who tested positive for COVID-19 over the number of COVID-19 tests performed. A high positivity rate can tell us if there is a high level of transmission in the community. It can also tell us if we are testing broadly enough and if testing numbers are down. A positivity rate of 5% or less over a 14-day period is recommended by the World Health Organization prior to reopening.