In Reversal, Kansas Will Count All Positive COVID Cases, Even Asymptomatic Ones

Kansas leaders will include asymptomatic COVID-19 cases in their assessments of virus trends as they evaluate when to take further steps to ease stay-at-home orders and other social distancing measures.

The move represents a reversal after NPR station KCUR in Kansas City, Missouri, reported last week that the state was omitting these cases from its data, painting an overly optimistic picture of the outbreak. Kansas had instead looked at “symptom onset” data — a metric that by definition excludes people who test positive for the coronavirus but don’t develop symptoms.

The policy change was enacted Monday, said a spokesperson for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Kansas entered the first phase of the state’s “reopening” plan last week, allowing gatherings of 10 or fewer people and letting libraries and child care facilities reopen. Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, said in a news conference last week that leaders would take

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