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COVID-19 county-by-county risk map
Photograph: Georgia Tech

This map highlights the risk of catching COVID-19 in every single county in the United States

Always remember to keep your guard up.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan
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Although recent news about the (hopefully) impending arrival of a COVID-19 vaccine has certainly raised morale throughout the United States, the risk of catching the virus is still high and a new map by a team of Georgia Tech researchers highlights how high that risk actually is across each county in the country.

RECOMMENDED: Did you know that not all COVID-19 testing sites are legit?

The COVID-19 Risk Assessment Planning Tool, which you can consult right here, specifically highlights the risk level associated to attending an event based on its size and location. "The risk level is the estimated chance (0-100%) that at least one COVID-19 positive individual will be present at an event in a county, given the size of the event," reads the tool's official website.

Users are encouraged to input the size of a supposed happening and then browse the map by county to explore the risk level associated to the area. The effort is populated by data provided by each county, therefore assessing immediate risk levels and not potential future ones.

For example, according to the tool, attending a 50-person gathering in Blaine County, Montana, carries with it a 99% chance of encountering at least one COVID-19-positive individual. A 15-person event in Camden County, New Jersey, on the other hand, comes along with a 27% risk level. Heading to a 100-person get-together in Westchester County, New York, puts you at a 73% chance of encountering one COVID-19 positive person.

Reporting on the map, the Los Angeles Times quotes Clio Andris, a professor of city and regional planning and interactive computing at Georgia Tech who helped build the tool: "In a way, it's like a weather map," he says. "It can tell you what the risk is that it will rain, but it can't tell you if you'll get wet. That depends on if you carry an umbrella, or if you choose not to go outside at all."

Which is all to say: try to always carry an umbrella (ie, a mask) and stay vigilant.

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