A Final Report Card on the States’ Response to COVID-19
Almost exactly two years ago COVID-19 spread to the United States. Following the federalism model, the 50 states and their governors and legislators made many of their own pandemic policy choices to mitigate the damage from the virus. States learned from one another over time about what policies worked most and least effectively in terms of containing the virus while minimizing the negative effects of lockdown strategies on businesses and children.
This study is an expanded and updated version of an October 2020 report card of how pandemic health, economy, and policy varied across the 50 states and the District of Columbia (Committee to Unleash Prosperity 2020). It examines three variables: health outcomes, economic performance throughout the pandemic, and impact on education.
We wish to thank Jay Bhattacharya for his review of this study and his instructive advice. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.