Analysis / Forces

Covid-19 Response Update: August 14-August 21

Combating Covid-19 Series

This is CSIS’s weekly roundup of major updates on the military and the novel coronavirus since Friday, August 14. It explores what the military has done to combat Covid-19 and how the military has in turn been affected by the virus.

New DoD cases of Covid-19 are continuing to decline this week with the 7-day average falling by 4 percent since last Friday to 532 new cases. Deaths rose by three over this past week to 77, including an Army soldier who is now the fifth total death among military service members.

New DoD cases have trended downwards for the past few weeks, loosely following broader trends among the civilian population. However, cases remain high in certain states, and DoD medical personnel continue to provide assistance in civilian hospitals in states such as Texas and California.

Major Updates:

  • August 17: Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the US Navy’s annual Rim of the Pacific exercise kicked off with a third of the expected countries and a fifth of the expected personnel.
  • August 17: A substantial increase in Covid-19 cases over the weekend prompted US Forces Korea to raise its disease alert level.

Military Cases of Covid-19

How DoD cases have been trending over time is broken down below, by new cases; total cases; active cases in the DoD; and across the military services.

Methodological note: 1) Monday, Wednesday, and Friday totals are divided across the intervening days and weekends since DoD Covid-19 updates are only released during the work week on a M-W-F basis. 2) Adjustments were made on April 9 and April 15 when new cases where negative. These days were totaled and divided by the previous day to account for the correction. 3) DoD appeared to change the way cases were reported between April 15-Aprilt 16. A resulting spike in cases on April 16 was divided over the two prior days to account for this methodological shift.

This weekly update is made possible by the International Security Program at CSIS.

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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Mark Cancian, Adam Saxton and Nidal Morrison, "Covid-19 Response Update: August 14-August 21," Center for Strategic and International Studies, August 21, 2020, last modified August 21, 2020, https://defense360.csis.org/covid-19-response-update-august-14-august-21/.