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Is Social Distancing Working in the US? How Successful Each State Has Been

Is Social Distancing Working in the US? How Successful Each State Has Been

How has your state done at social distancing?

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As social distancing guidelines and state restrictions continue in some states and loosen in others, mobile data reveals that staying home has been a challenge. A new study by data company Unacast gives each state in the U.S. a score for how successful it's been at social distancing. Here are the grades as of May 8.

Methodology

Methodology

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Unacast, a group that studies human mobility data, revealed how successful each state has been at social distancing on an A through F scale. By tracking cell-phone data, the study assigned scores based on three metrics compared to a pre-COVID period: average distance traveled, visitation to non-essential locations and human encounters density. Human encounters density is the newest metric added to the study. It’s meant to examine the probability that two devices were in the same place at the same time. This metric is compared to the national average encounter density, which was calculated by looking at the four weeks before the COVID-19 outbreak. Each state received a grade for every metric and an overall grade.

The Overall Social Distancing Score of the U.S.: D-

The Overall Social Distancing Score of the U.S.: D-

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In its entirety, America’s social distancing score is a D-. The U.S. received a D in average distance traveled, an F in visitation to non-essential locations and a D in human encounter density, according to the study.

Alabama: F

Alabama: F

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According to Unacast’s data, from May 3 to May 8, Alabama’s rating sunk from a D to an F. This means that the state has had less than a 25% reduction in average mobility and has reduced non-essential visits by less than 55%. For some alternatives to leaving the house, here is a list of every chain and service offering free delivery right now.

Alaska: D+

Alaska: D+

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According to Unacast’s data, Alaska’s overall rating is a D+. However, certain regions of the state have maintained an A or B rating. Alaska has seen less than a 25% reduction in average mobility as of May 8.

Arizona: F

Arizona: F

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Arizona has an F as its overall social distancing score. The state has seen less than a 25% reduction in average mobility as of May 8 and has an F rating in two out of the three metrics.

Arkansas: F

Arkansas: F

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Arkansas’s overall rating is an F. The state has seen less than a 25% reduction in average mobility and has reduced non-essential visits by less than 55% as of May 8. If you do need to leave the house, here is a helpful guide for how to mitigate the risk of spreading germs.

California: D-

California: D-

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As of May 8, California's social distancing score was a D-. The majority of the state’s counties have a D to F rating when it comes to social distancing. While it’s been able to decrease its human encounter density by at least 40%, the state received an F grade for the change in non-essential visits metric.

Colorado: D

Colorado: D

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Although Colorado’s overall social distancing score is a D, a handful of the state’s counties have an overall B rating. While the state hasn’t been too successful at decreasing its average mobility and change in non-essential visits, it’s been able to decrease its human encounter density by 74%-82%.

Connecticut: D-

Connecticut: D-

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As of May 8, Connecticut’s overall social distancing score is a D-, according to Unacast’s data. When observing individual metrics, the state has been able to reduce non-essential visits by 55%-60%.

Delaware: D-

Delaware: D-

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Split into only three counties, the state of Delaware has an D rating, according to Unacast’s social distancing scores. The state decreased human encounter density by less than 40%.

Florida: F

Florida: F

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Florida has received an F as its overall social distancing score, according to Unacast. The state has seen only a 25%-40% reduction in average mobility. If you’re getting bored while staying inside, here is a helpful guide for some fun skills you can learn at home during quarantine.

Georgia: F

Georgia: F

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According to the study, Georgia has an F as its overall score. The state has a D in change in average mobility, and an F in change in non-essential visits and human encounters density.

Hawaii: D-

Hawaii: D-

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Although Hawaii has a C rating when it comes to its change in average mobility, the state has a D- as its overall social distancing score. The state received an F rating in change in non-essential visits and human encounters density.

Idaho: D

Idaho: D

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The state of Idaho has a D as its overall social distancing score, but according to Unacast’s data, the state has been successful at decreasing its human encounters density. It’s decreased by 82%-94% compared to the national baseline.

Illinois: F

Illinois: F

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In a time where it’s not uncommon for someone you know to have the coronavirus, many states have still struggled to score above an F on Unacast’s rating system. The group reports that, as of May 8, the state of Illinois had an overall social distancing score of an F.

Indiana: F

Indiana: F

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Indiana received an F as its overall social distancing score, according to Unacast’s data. The state has reduced non-essential visits by less than 55% and has reduced average mobility by 25%-40%.

Iowa: F

Iowa: F

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Iowa has an F as its overall social distancing score. The state has reduced non-essential visits by less than 55% and has reduced average mobility by 25%-40%.

Kansas: F

Kansas: F

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Unacast’s study reports that Kansas has an overall F as its social distancing score. The state received an F in reduction in average mobility and reduction in non-essential visits.

Kentucky: F

Kentucky: F

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The state of Kentucky’s overall rating is an F. From May 3 to May 8, its change in average mobility rating sunk from a C to a D, according to Unacast’s data. To find out when the state is expected to hit its peak use of resources, click here.

Louisiana: F

Louisiana: F

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According to the study, not only does the state of Louisiana have an F as its overall social distancing rating, but it also received an F in two out of the three metrics measured by Unacast.

Maine: D+

Maine: D+

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When the virus first began to peak in late February to early March, Maine’s social distancing score was an F. The state is now clocking in at a D+. As of May 8, the state has seen a 25%-40% reduction in average mobility, according to Unacast’s data.

Maryland: D-

Maryland: D-

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Maryland received a D- as its overall social distancing score, according to Unacast’s data. The state has reduced non-essential visits by at least 55% and has reduced average mobility by 25%-40%.

Massachusetts: D+

Massachusetts: D+

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With many people working from home during quarantine, Massachusetts managed a C rating when it comes to its reduction of average mobility. But the state has a D+ as its overall social distancing score. When looking at the decrease of human encounters metric observed by Unacast, the state received an F.

Michigan: F

Michigan: F

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As of May 8, Michigan’s social distancing score was an F. The state received an F grade in change in non-essential visits and decrease in human encounters density, according to Unacast. 

Minnesota: D-

Minnesota: D-

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While the state’s overall social distancing score is a D-, the state of Minnesota has been able to reduce human encounters density by 40 to 74%. If you’re planning to venture out during the age of coronavirus, here is a guide for how to properly wear a mask in public.

Mississippi: F

Mississippi: F

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As of May 8, Mississippi’s social distancing score was an F. The majority of the state’s counties have a C to F rating when it comes to the observed social distancing metrics set by Unacast.

Missouri: F

Missouri: F

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Like many of the states already listed, Missouri has an F as its overall social distancing rating. According to the study, the state also received an F across all three metrics measured by Unacast.

Montana: D+

Montana: D+

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Montana has a D+ as its overall social distancing score, but according to Unacast’s data, the state has been successful at decreasing its human encounters density, a metric in which the state received an A. The study reports that the state has decreased its human encounters density by 94% compared to the national baseline.

Nebraska: D

Nebraska: D

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Nebraska received a D rating by Unacast. The state has been able to decrease its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by at least 74% — giving it a C rating for that metric.

Nevada: C+

Nevada: C+

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The best-scoring state in the country, Nevada has a C+ as its overall social distancing score, according to Unacast’s data. For all of you Nevadans staying home, here are some suggestions on how to stay close to loved ones during quarantine.

New Hampshire: D-

New Hampshire: D-

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New Hampshire has a D- as its overall social distancing score. The state has only seen a 25%-40% reduction in average mobility and has reduced its non-essential visits by less than 55%, the study reports.

New Jersey: D+

New Jersey: D+

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While New Jersey received a D+ as its overall social distancing score, the state has been able to reduce its average mobility by 40%-55%, a metric the state received a C in, according to Unacast.

New Mexico: C-

New Mexico: C-

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New Mexico has a C- as its overall social distancing score, but according to Unacast’s data, the state has been able to decrease its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by 94%.

New York: D+

New York: D+

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The state of New York, which has been avid in its efforts to support healthcare workers, currently has a D+ rating, according to Unacast’s data. While it has an F in the decrease of human encounters, the state was given a C in its reduction of average mobility.

North Carolina: F

North Carolina: F

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North Carolina has an F as its overall social distancing score. Unacast’s study shows that the state has reduced non-essential visits by less than 55%. As of May 8, the state has an F across all three metrics measured by Unacast.

North Dakota: C-

North Dakota: C-

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North Dakota’s overall social distancing score is a C-. The state has been able to reduce its human encounters, compared to the national baseline, by 94%. If you are someone who has to make an essential trip, here are some CDC-approved cleaning supplies to mitigate the risk of tracking outside germs throughout your home.

Ohio: F

Ohio: F

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As of May 8, Ohio’s social distancing score is an F. The state has reduced average mobility by less than 25%-40% and there’s been less than a 40% decrease in human encounters density compared to the national baseline.

Oklahoma: F

Oklahoma: F

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According to Unacast’s data, as of May 8, Oklahoma has an F as its overall social distancing rating. The state also received an F across all three metrics measured by Unacast.

Oregon: D

Oregon: D

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From May 3 to May 8, Oregon’s rating for average change in mobility spiked from a C to an F. When considering all three metrics studied by Unacast, the state received a D as its overall social distancing score.

Pennsylvania: D-

Pennsylvania: D-

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While the coronavirus has resulted in the cancellation of vacations, concerts and more, non-essential trips have still been prevalent, according to Unacast’s data. Pennsylvania scored a D- in social distancing, according to Unacast. The study shows that from May 3 to May 8, the state saw a jump from a C to a D when looking at the change in non-essential visits metric.

Rhode Island: D-

Rhode Island: D-

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Rhode Island, which is split into only five counties, has a D- as its overall social distancing rating. No county in the state scored above a D+ when looking at Unacast’s data.

South Carolina: F

South Carolina: F

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As of May 8, South Carolina received an F as its overall social distancing rating. According to the study, the state also received an F across all three metrics measured by Unacast.

South Dakota: D

South Dakota: D

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South Dakota has a D as its overall social distancing score. While the state has an F in the reduction of non-essential visits metric, it received a B for decreasing its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by at least 82%.

Tennessee: F

Tennessee: F

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According to the study, the state of Tennessee received an F across all three metrics: change in average mobility, change in non-essential visits and difference in encounter density. And, despite some states scoring low on Unacast’s social distancing scoreboard, stories of kindness and joy continue to prevail throughout the age of coronavirus.

Texas: F

Texas: F

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Like Tennessee, the state of Texas also received an F across all three metrics, the study shows.

Utah: D-

Utah: D-

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According to Unacast’s data, Utah has a D- as its social distancing score. The state has been able to reduce its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by at least 74%. But it reduced non-essential travel by less than 55%.

Vermont: C

Vermont: C

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While Vermont has an F in the reduction of non-essential visits metric, it received an A for decreasing its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by 94%. The state received an overall score of a C.

Virginia: F

Virginia: F

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The state of Virginia has an F as its overall social distancing score. According to the data, Virginia has reduced its non-essential visits by less than 55%. One method of reducing non-essential travel is by ordering takeout. Here is a complete guide for what food America has been ordering during quarantine.

Washington: F

Washington: F

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According to the study, Washington has an F on the social distance grading scale. The state has seen at least a 40% reduction in human encounters density compared to the national baseline.

Washington, DC: C

Washington, DC: C

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The District of Columbia has scored a C in social distancing. Unacast’s study shows that the nation’s capital has reduced non-essential visits by more than 70%.

West Virginia: F

West Virginia: F

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The state of West Virginia has an F as its overall social distancing score. It’s reduced non-essential visits by less than 55%.

Wisconsin: F

Wisconsin: F

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Wisconsin has an F as its overall social distancing score. The state has seen less than a 25% reduction in average mobility and has reduced its non-essential visits by less than 55%, the study reports.

Wyoming: D+

Wyoming: D+

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Wyoming has a D+ as its overall social distancing score, but according to Unacast’s data, the state has been able to decrease its human encounters density, compared to the national baseline, by 94%. According to The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, relaxing social distancing restrictions in Wyoming may be possible after May 31, and here’s a complete list of when each state may be able to reopen.

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