A new report from the data analysts at Wallethub ranks New Hampshire as the fourth most aggressive state when it comes to taking action to stop the spread of the coronavirus. The ranking was based on conditions as of March 23.
To identify which states are taking the largest actions to combat coronavirus, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 46 key metrics. The data set ranges from tested cases of COVID-19 per capita to school closures, ICU beds and shelter-in-place policies.
“New Hampshire is the fourth most aggressive state in limiting Coronavirus exposure. It has administered one of the largest number of tests and has a very low share of confirmed cases — just above 3 percent,” Wallethub analyst Jill Gonzalez told NHJournal. “In addition, the state has restricted travel, closed schools, restaurants and bars, and has imposed a freeze on evictions, foreclosures and utility bill collections, in an effort to protect the population from getting infected.”
Using these metrics, the most aggressive states are California, Rhode Island, Maryland, New Hampshire and New Jersey.
“Today’s study recognizes we are taking unprecedented and proactive steps. Testing is ramping up. And we are working around the clock to slow and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 here in New Hampshire,” Gov. Chris Sununu told NHJournal.
Most Aggressive States Against the Coronavirus
According to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services, New Hamsphire had 101 identified cases of COVID-19, and 11 of those patients required hospitalization. One coronavirus patient, a Hillsborough County man over the age of 60 with multiple underlying health issues, has died.
Since the coronavirus crisis began, Sununu has released a series of executive orders closing all bars and restaurants to on-site service, shutting down all public schools and banning any gatherings of 10 or more people.
However, the governor has thus far declined to issue a so-called “shelter-in-place” order or advisory as some other states have. New Hampshire Democrats are demanding he take that additional step, but Sununu says it’s not necessary at this time.
“Here in New Hampshire we value individual and community responsibility. In these unprecedented times, people in New Hampshire truly have a great, great responsibility. We have to be accountable to each other and it’s imperative that everybody stay safe,” Sununu said at a Monday news briefing. “If it becomes clear that we’re unable to continue with the social distancing, further action may be necessary.”
Additional findings from the Wallethub report:
“The governor and state agencies are being super responsive to our constituents’ needs under very difficult circumstances,” House GOP leader Rep. Dick Hinch told NHJournal. “I think the governor’s decisive actions have helped us avoid a health catastrophe in New Hampshire.
“I’m confident that once we are on the other side of this crisis, his leadership, and the smart folks he has working with him, will be able to get our economy humming again.”