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Coronavirus in Wisconsin: Fewer tests, fewer cases, fewer deaths reported

WISCONSIN state map with CORONAVIRUS lettering, on texture, finished graphic
WISCONSIN state map with CORONAVIRUS lettering, on texture, finished graphic(Associated Press)
Published: Nov. 30, 2020 at 2:09 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2020 at 3:54 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WBAY) – The Thanksgiving holiday continues to bring in lower numbers in coronavirus testing in Wisconsin. Monday, the Department of Health Services reported 2,534 new cases were identified in the latest batch of test results.

TOTAL TESTS: 8,740

Positive: 2,534 (28.99%)

Negative: 6,206

That’s the fewest test results since October 5, and aside from Friday’s two-month low of 1,300 cases, the 2,534 new cases is the fewest since October 12.

The 2,534 new cases is well below the 7-day average of 4,209 new cases per day.

The positivity rate -- the percentage of tests which came back positive -- was 28.99%, which is below the 7-day average of 34.59%.

New cases were reported in 68 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties. In 19 of these counties, new cases were in the single digits.

It’s been an erratic week for coronavirus numbers from the state Department of Health Services. With multiple testing sites closed and less testing over the holiday break, coronavirus cases fell to a two-month low on Friday, followed by more than 5,000 new cases and a 53% positivity rate Saturday, then 7-day averages back on the rise on Sunday. We’ve reported since last week that there may be a spike in case and death numbers for days after the testing sites reopen and staffing returns to normal for completing test results and verifying COVID-19 deaths.

NEW DEATHS: 6

Death toll: 3,313

The five counties reporting deaths were: Bayfield, Milwaukee, Rock, Waukesha (2) and Wood. Winnebago County reported 2 more deaths, and the City of Appleton reported two deaths in Outagamie County which will be added to the state’s total in the coming days.

County case numbers are listed later in this article.

The 7-day average for deaths was the same as Sunday, with 43 per day, but last week that average was ranging in the 50′s. The death rate remains at 0.86% of all cases.

ACTIVE CASES: 17.8%

A total 387,235 people in Wisconsin have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus in less than 10 months.

The percentage of active cases fell Monday to 17.8%, with 68,774 people diagnosed in the past 30 days who haven’t been medically cleared. The state says 315,086 people are considered recovered, or 81.4% of known coronavirus cases.

95 HOSPITALIZATIONS

For the third time in 10 days, fewer than 100 people were hospitalized for treatment of serious COVID-19 symptoms. The DHS says 96 people were hospitalized in the last 24 hours, well below the 7-day average of 166 hospitalizations per day.

Since the start of the pandemic, more than 17,000 people (17,095) have been hospitalized for COVID-19, which is 4.4% of all known cases.

New figures Monday show 1,845 COVID-19 patients are in hospitals currently, including 395 in ICU. That’s 21 more patients hospitalized than Sunday but 154 fewer than a week ago, according to the Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA). Changes in hospitalization numbers take deaths and discharges into account.

The alternate care facility at the state fairgrounds was down to 6 patients Monday. The field hospital is meant to help free up hospital beds by taking patients who are close to being released from the hospital but not quite ready, such as those who are ambulatory but still need oxygen.

HOSPITAL READINESS

The WHA reports 187 ICU beds are open among the state’s 134 hospitals, indicating 87.2% of the state’s ICU beds are occupied. Including intermediate care, medical surgical and negative flow isolation, the state has 1,690 beds open, or 15.1% of all beds. That’s not to say they’re all available unless a hospital doesn’t have the staff -- doctors, nurses, food workers -- to care for a patient in them.

The 13 hospitals in the Fox Valley region are treating 106 COVID-19 patients, 21 in ICU. There are 15 ICU beds open among them, or 14.3%, with 14% of beds open overall. Five hospitals in this 8-county region report having less than a one-week’s supply of goggles, gowns, and paper masks.

The 10 hospitals in the Northeast region are treating 175 COVID-19 patients, 43 in ICU. The 7-county region has 8.7% of ICU beds open, and 17.4% of beds overall. In the categories of goggles, N95 masks, gowns and paper medical masks, one hospital reports having less than a 7-day supply.

Statewide, there are 22 hospitals short on gowns, 12 needing paper medical masks, 9 needing goggles, and 7 in need of N95 masks.

MONDAY’S COUNTY CASE UPDATES (Counties with new cases or deaths are indicated in bold.)*

Wisconsin*

  • Adams – 1,040 cases (+6) (7 deaths)
  • Ashland – 669 cases (+6) (9 deaths)
  • Barron – 3,619 cases (+39) (41 deaths)
  • Bayfield - 680 cases (+10) (13 deaths) (+1)
  • Brown – 22,543 cases (+7) (137 deaths)
  • Buffalo – 805 cases (+6) (4 deaths)
  • Burnett – 772 cases (+2) (12 deaths)
  • Calumet – 4,059 cases (+22) (25 deaths)
  • Chippewa – 4,666 cases (+68) (51 deaths)
  • Clark – 2,154 cases (+9) (38 deaths)
  • Columbia – 3,480 cases (+19) (12 deaths)
  • Crawford – 1,222 cases (+15) (7 deaths)
  • Dane – 27,489 cases (+253) (80 deaths)
  • Dodge – 8,358 cases (+45) (71 deaths)
  • Door - 1,597 cases (+5) (11 deaths)
  • Douglas – 2,057 cases (+21) (1 death)
  • Dunn – 2,812 cases (+22) (12 deaths)
  • Eau Claire – 7,790 cases (+34) (57 deaths)
  • Florence - 316 cases (+5) (11 deaths)
  • Fond du Lac – 8,451 cases (+69) (50 deaths)
  • Forest - 727 cases (+7) (17 deaths)
  • Grant – 3,462 cases (+18) (62 deaths)
  • Green – 1,691 cases (+16) (5 deaths)
  • Green Lake - 1,184 cases (+1) (6 deaths)
  • Iowa - 1,286 cases (5 deaths)
  • Iron - 351 cases (10 deaths)
  • Jackson - 1,717 cases (+5) (4 deaths)
  • Jefferson – 5,352 cases (+58) (39 deaths)
  • Juneau - 1,915 cases (+20) (7 deaths)
  • Kenosha – 9,306 cases (+36) (142 deaths)
  • Kewaunee - 1,689 cases (16 deaths)
  • La Crosse – 8,087 cases (+76) (35 deaths)
  • Lafayette - 1,084 cases (+6) (3 deaths)
  • Langlade - 1,531 cases (+16) (26 deaths)
  • Lincoln – 1,951 cases (+17) (28 deaths)
  • Manitowoc – 4,889 cases (+43) (37 deaths)
  • Marathon – 9,702 cases (+37) (123 deaths)
  • Marinette - 2,952 cases (+1) (28 deaths)
  • Marquette – 1,026 cases (+4) (15 deaths)
  • Menominee - 557 cases (+1) (8 deaths)
  • Milwaukee – 68,219 (+388) (736 deaths) (+1)
  • Monroe - 2,615 cases (+49) (13 deaths)
  • Oconto – 3,139 cases (+14) (27 deaths)
  • Oneida - 2,309 cases (+18) (34 deaths)
  • Outagamie – 13,696 cases (+49) (126 deaths)
  • Ozaukee - 4,711 cases (+19) (36 deaths)
  • Pepin – 473 cases (2 deaths)
  • Pierce – 2,160 cases (+32) (17 deaths)
  • Polk – 2,174 cases (+33) (9 deaths)
  • Portage – 4,680 cases (+25) (36 deaths)
  • Price – 731 cases (+15) (4 deaths)
  • Racine – 14,099 cases (+81) (164 deaths)
  • Richland - 871 cases (+6) (13 deaths)
  • Rock – 9,440 cases (+74) (82 deaths) (+1)
  • Rusk - 872 cases (+3) (7 deaths)
  • Sauk – 3,578 cases (+45) (18 deaths)
  • Sawyer - 906 cases (+16) (7 deaths)
  • Shawano – 3,690 cases (+19) (47 deaths)
  • Sheboygan – 9,125 cases (+67) (54 deaths)
  • St. Croix – 4,327 cases (+31) (20 deaths)
  • Taylor - 1,193 cases (+22) (10 deaths)
  • Trempealeau – 2,390 cases (+13) (15 deaths)
  • Vernon – 1,144 cases (+6) (11 deaths)
  • Vilas - 1,251 cases (+11) (13 deaths)
  • Walworth – 5,889 cases (+31) (48 deaths)
  • Washburn – 692 cases (+10) (3 deaths)
  • Washington – 8,775 cases (+45) (70 deaths)
  • Waukesha – 26,238 cases (+294) (197 deaths) (+2)
  • Waupaca – 3,677 cases (+13) (85 deaths)
  • Waushara – 1,749 cases (+7) (10 deaths)
  • Winnebago – 13,154 cases (+55) (107 deaths)
  • Wood – 4,230 cases (+18) (27 deaths) (+1)

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula **

  • Alger - 151 cases (1 death) (cases revised -7 by state)
  • Baraga - 407 cases (+1) (15 deaths)
  • Chippewa - 354 cases (6 deaths) (+1) (cases revised -6 by state)
  • Delta – 2,217 cases (+39) (49 deaths) (+1)
  • Dickinson - 1,650 cases (+29) (40 deaths)
  • Gogebic - 580 cases (+13) (11 deaths)
  • Houghton – 1,264 cases (+9) (11 deaths)
  • Iron – 691 cases (+11) (29 deaths)
  • Keweenaw – 56 cases (1 death)
  • Luce – 118 cases (+1)
  • Mackinac - 215 cases (+9)
  • Marquette - 2,567 cases (+60) (30 deaths) (+1)
  • Menominee - 1,158 cases (+36) (18 deaths) (+2)
  • Ontonagon – 249 cases (13 deaths) (+1)
  • Schoolcraft - 164 cases (+3) (1 death)

* Viewers have asked us why the state has different numbers than what’s reported on some county health department websites. The DHS reports cases from all health departments within a county’s boundaries, including tribal, municipal and county health departments; county websites may not. Also, public health departments update their data at various times whereas the DHS freezes the numbers it receives by the same time every day to compile the afternoon report.

The DHS reports deaths attributed to COVID-19 or in which COVID-19 contributed to their death. Most of the people severely affected by the coronavirus have underlying illnesses or conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease or obesity, which raises a person’s risk of dying from COVID-19 but would’ve lived longer if not for their infection. The state may revise case and death numbers after further review, such as the victim’s residence, duplicated records, or a correction in lab results. Details can be found on the DHS website and Frequently Asked Questions.

**The state of Michigan does not update numbers on Sundays. Monday’s numbers include updates since Saturday’s reporting deadline.

Symptoms

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identified these as possible symptoms of COVID-19:

  • Fever of 100.4 or higher
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell

Prevention

  • The coronavirus is a new, or “novel,” virus. Nobody has a natural immunity to it. Children and teens seem to recover best from the virus. Older people and those with underlying health conditions (heart disease, diabetes, lung disease) are considered at high risk, according to the CDC. Precautions are also needed around people with developing or weakened immune systems.
  • To help prevent the spread of the virus:
  • Stay at least six feet away from other people
  • Avoid close contact with people who are or appear sick
  • Stay at home as much as possible
  • Cancel events and avoid groups, gatherings, play dates and nonessential appointments
  • Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care
  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a mask. At a minimum, use a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.

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