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Sunday’s COVID-19 report shows lowest daily positivity rate, hospitalizations in weeks

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Coronavirus generic(WRDW)
Published: Nov. 22, 2020 at 2:27 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WBAY) – A day after crossing the 3,000 cumulative death toll, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) says no new COVID-19 deaths were reported Sunday.

Sunday’s daily update also showed the lowest number of people needing hospitalization within a 24 hour period in nearly a month, and the lowest daily positivity rate since November 1. In addition, the state is reporting a steady decline of active cases.

DHS officials say 14,899 new coronavirus test results were received in the past 24-hour period, with 3,507 tests positive -- a positivity rate of 23.54%. This marks a fourth day of decline for new cases, and according to our records, the first time the positivity rate was below 25% since November 1, when the rate was reported at 19.34%.

The 7-day average for new cases decreased Sunday to 6,044 after a slight increase Saturday.

There were 11,392 negative tests in the latest batch of results.

With officials reporting no new deaths Sunday, the cumulative death toll remains at 3,005. COVID-19 is currently the fourth leading cause of death in Wisconsin. The state is averaging 53 deaths per day over the last 7 days, a decrease of one from Friday and Saturday’s average. The death percentage is currently 0.85%.

Our records show the last time the state reported no new deaths due to COVID-19 was on September 27.

Case and death numbers by county will be listed later in this article.

Gov. Tony Evers issued a new face coverings order Friday, as he announced he would earlier this week. Under the order, anyone age 5 or older has to wear a face covering whenever they’re indoors or in an enclosed space with someone from outside their household. The governor cited the rising number of hospitalizations putting a strain on hospitals in issuing the new public health order. He noted that it’s not just affecting patients with COVID-19; there are fewer beds, less staffing and fewer resources available for people who need to be hospitalized for other reasons, like heart attacks, strokes and accidents.

Health Secretary-designee Andrea Palm issued a statement, “We know hospitalizations are a lagging indicator, which means we will need even more capacity for our hospitals in the coming weeks with our current cases. We need every Wisconsinite to take this seriously to stay home. That is why it is imperative we take action to curb transmission now.”

The DHS says 89 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized in the last 24 hours. Our records show the last time fewer than 100 people were hospitalized for the virus within a 24 hour period was October 26, when 84 were hospitalized in one day.

Sunday’s report from the Wisconsin Hospital Association says there are currently 1,988 COVID-19 in hospitals, a decrease from Saturday’s report of 1,990. Of those, 428 are in intensive care, a decrease from 437 on Saturday. The alternate care facility -- the field hospital at the state fairgrounds -- is treating 21 patients, an increase of one from Saturday.

The state says 15,823 people have been hospitalized for COVID-19 treatment since the first coronavirus case was confirmed in Madison less than 10 months ago.

A total 354,676 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Wisconsin. The state says 21.2% of all of these cases are active, or 75,035 people diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus in the past 30 days and haven’t been medically cleared. That percentage has dropped steadily since Thursday, when it was reported at 22.3%. There are 276,574 people diagnosed with the virus who are considered recovered.

LEADING CAUSES OF DEATH

This year, COVID-19 has killed more people in Wisconsin than the flu and pneumonia, suicide and kidney disease in 2018 combined. The virus now compares to the 4th leading cause of death in Wisconsin, behind heart disease, cancer and accidents, based on the CDC’s 2018 mortality report, the latest ranked mortality figures available.

The CDC mortality figures are based on 12 months. Wisconsin’s first COVID-19 deaths were reported 8 months ago.

HOSPITAL READINESS

According to the Wisconsin Hospital Association, as of Sunday the state’s 134 hospitals have 185 open ICU beds, or 12.61% of the state’s ICU beds. It further indicates 14.9% of all hospital beds are open for intensive care, intermediate care, medical surgical and negative flow isolation.

The Fox Valley region’s 13 hospitals have a total of seven ICU beds open, or 6.7%, and four intermediate care beds. Overall, 12.3% of all hospital beds are open in that region serving eight counties. The hospitals are treating 136 COVID-19 patients, including 24 in ICU.

The Northeast region’s 10 hospitals have 25 ICU beds open, which is 12.1% of the seven-county region’s ICU beds, and 18.8% of all beds are available overall. Those hospitals are caring for 175 COVID-19 patients, 49 in ICU.

Hospital bed availability can fluctuate widely from day to day with new admissions, deaths, discharges for patients being treated for all conditions, not just COVID-19. An open bed doesn’t necessarily mean it’s available for a patient if the hospital doesn’t have the staff -- doctors, nurses, even food workers -- to support it.

The need for supplies remains unchanged from Saturday. 23 hospitals report less than a week’s supply of gowns – a number steady from Friday and an improvement from 25 on Thursday -- while 13 are short on paper medical masks, 9 hospitals need goggles, and 7 need N95 masks.

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

Wisconsin*

  • Adams - 977 cases (+23) (6 deaths)
  • Ashland - 580 cases (+18) (8 deaths)
  • Barron – 3,250 cases (+38) (36 deaths)
  • Bayfield - 616 cases (+9) (7 deaths)
  • Brown – 21,156 cases (+99) (127 deaths)
  • Buffalo – 715 cases (+12) (4 deaths)
  • Burnett – 704 cases (+25) (10 deaths)
  • Calumet - 3,862 cases (+47) (25 deaths)
  • Chippewa – 4,255 cases (+80) (45 deaths)
  • Clark – 1,961 cases (+50) (33 deaths)
  • Columbia – 3,121 cases (+45) (10 deaths)
  • Crawford – 815 cases (+17) (5 deaths)
  • Dane – 24,866 cases (+212) (75 deaths)
  • Dodge – 7,697 cases (+55) (66 deaths)
  • Door - 1,525 cases (+14) (11 deaths)
  • Douglas – 1,738 cases (+90) (1 death)
  • Dunn – 2,413 cases (+109) (8 deaths)
  • Eau Claire – 7,182 cases (+107) (54 deaths)
  • Florence - 304 cases (+8) (11 deaths)
  • Fond du Lac – 7,859 cases (+3) (41 deaths)
  • Forest - 691 cases (+2) (16 deaths)
  • Grant – 3,203 cases (+32) (57 deaths)
  • Green – 1,542 cases (+23) (5 deaths)
  • Green Lake - 1,121 cases (+11) (5 deaths)
  • Iowa - 1,180 cases (+18) (4 deaths)
  • Iron - 326 cases (+2) (6 deaths)
  • Jackson - 1,573 cases (+87) (4 deaths)
  • Jefferson – 4,849 cases (+53) (33 deaths)
  • Juneau - 1,777 cases (+31) (7 deaths)
  • Kenosha – 8,425 cases (State revised, decrease of 21) (123 deaths)
  • Kewaunee - 1,567 cases (+19) (15 deaths)
  • La Crosse – 7,340 cases (+53) (32 deaths)
  • Lafayette - 1,022 cases (+13) (3 deaths)
  • Langlade - 1,447 cases (+8) (24 deaths)
  • Lincoln – 1,774 cases (+36) (22 deaths)
  • Manitowoc – 4,527 cases (+34) (33 deaths)
  • Marathon – 8,965 cases (+120) (113 deaths)
  • Marinette - 2,732 cases (+15) (25 deaths)
  • Marquette - 994 cases (+2) (12 deaths)
  • Menominee - 536 cases (+1) (2 deaths)
  • Milwaukee – 61,739 (+574) (700 deaths)
  • Monroe - 2,304 cases (+66) (11 deaths)
  • Oconto – 2,981 cases (+10) (23 deaths)
  • Oneida - 2,140 cases (+41) (28 deaths)
  • Outagamie – 13,035 cases (+105) (113 deaths)
  • Ozaukee - 4,328 cases (+27) (33 deaths)
  • Pepin – 438 cases (+5) (2 deaths)
  • Pierce – 1,855 cases (+44) (16 deaths)
  • Polk – 1,894 cases (+65) (5 deaths)
  • Portage – 4,372 cases (+61) (35 deaths)
  • Price - 659 cases (+12) (3 deaths)
  • Racine – 13,093 cases (+150) (149 deaths)
  • Richland - 806 cases (+20) (12 deaths)
  • Rock – 8,664 cases (+157) (69 deaths)
  • Rusk - 742 cases (+16) (5 deaths)
  • Sauk – 3,279 cases (+40) (16 deaths)
  • Sawyer - 788 cases (+17) (7 deaths)
  • Shawano – 3,534 cases (+10) (44 deaths)
  • Sheboygan - 8,347 cases (+8) (48 deaths)
  • St. Croix – 3,9645 cases (+89) (19 deaths)
  • Taylor - 1,033 cases (State revised, decrease of 35) (10 deaths) (State revised, decrease of 1)
  • Trempealeau – 2,175 cases (+57) (12 deaths)
  • Vernon - 993 cases (+29) (7 deaths)
  • Vilas - 1,112 cases (+10) (11 deaths)
  • Walworth – 5,448 cases (+23) (46 deaths)
  • Washburn – 581 cases (+29) (2 deaths)
  • Washington – 7,997 cases (+105) (64 deaths)
  • Waukesha – 23,692 cases (+31) (181 deaths)
  • Waupaca – 3,522 cases (77 deaths)(State revised, decrease of 4)
  • Waushara – 1,679 cases (+6) (7 deaths)
  • Winnebago – 12,511 cases (+90) (101 deaths)
  • Wood – 3,784 cases (+45) (25 deaths)

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula **

  • Alger - 141 cases (1 death)
  • Baraga - 332 cases (6 deaths)
  • Chippewa - 288 cases (2 deaths)
  • Delta – 2,053 cases (47 deaths)
  • Dickinson - 1,453 cases (28 deaths)
  • Gogebic - 517 cases (10 deaths)
  • Houghton – 1,171 cases (9 deaths)
  • Iron – 638 cases (28 deaths)
  • Keweenaw – 52 cases (1 death)
  • Luce – 110 cases
  • Mackinac - 193 cases
  • Marquette - 2,267 cases (25 deaths)
  • Menominee - 1,076 cases (12 deaths)
  • Ontonagon – 232 cases (11 deaths)
  • Schoolcraft - 154 cases (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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