Wave Two hits 2-1-1s

July 23, 2020

As COVID-19 cases have surged across the U.S., so too have calls for help to 2-1-1. In prior reporting, we identified distinct phases of 2-1-1’s pandemic response by the volume of requests, including Pre-COVID (green bars on chart below), Initial Surge (orange), Steady Decline (yellow), and Gradual Decline (dark blue). At the time, six weeks ago, it was not known whether the next phase would show that community needs are stabilizing or increasing. It’s now clear that the latter is correct, as requests have risen sharply in June and July (light blue). We refer to this fifth phase as Wave Two of 2-1-1 requests during COVID-19, and note its close correspondence in time to the rise in COVID-19 cases. During Wave Two, average requests per day are up 36%, increasing from 21,143 during the last week of May to 28,736 from July 13-19, 2020. Data for this report came from 2-1-1s serving 32 states participating in a daily tracking system: AL, AR, CA, CT, DE, FL, HI, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, NC, NE, NJ, NV, NY, OH, PA, SC, SD, TN, VA, WA, WI and WY.

Contributors: Rachel Garg, Balaji Golla, Matthew Kreuter