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Half of Wisconsin’s latest coronavirus test results are positive, DHS reports five new deaths

(NBC15)
Published: Jan. 3, 2021 at 2:16 PM CST
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MADISON Wis. (WBAY) – State health officials say after low numbers for new coronavirus cases for the first two days of 2021, Wisconsin saw a larger increase in new cases on Sunday.

According to the Department of Health Services (DHS), more than 2,400 new cases were confirmed within the last 24 hours. That’s after two days of the state reporting fewer than 2,000 cases a day.

The state’s 2,446 new confirmed cases bring Wisconsin’s cumulative total to 486,531. The 2,466 positive tests were out of a total of 4,588 total test results, a positivity rate of 53.31%, or 1 in 2 tests being positive for the virus.

The DHS says the number of active cases increased slightly from 26,577 Saturday to 26,670 on Sunday. That makes up 5.5% of all known cases, the same percentage as Saturday. There are 454,850 people (93.5%) who are considered recovered. A person is considered recovered if it’s been 30 days since their diagnosis or onset of symptoms or were medically cleared, though some may feel lingering effects from their infection.

The seven-day average of new positive tests increased slightly from 2,222 Saturday to 2,245 Sunday. The 14-day average of positive tests also increased from 2,052 to 2,097. That two-week window includes Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day.

The Wisconsin DHS also reported five new deaths on Sunday.

Wisconsin recorded 2,142 new negative COVID-19 tests within the past 24 hours. In total, 2,363,175 tests have come back negative for the virus.

Deaths

The five new deaths reported by state health officials Sunday brings Wisconsin’s cumulative death toll to 4,875. The first deaths were reported back in March. State officials say the new deaths were in Chippewa, Dunn, Eau Claire, Kenosha, Portage and St. Croix Counties. The state revised a death number in Dane County. Meanwhile, health officials revised the total case count in Shawano County.

The 7-day average for COVID-19 deaths returned to 26 after holding steady at 27 for two days. That figure had been 26 last Thursday. In addition, state health officials say Wisconsin’s death rate declined and returned to 1.0% after holding at 1.01% for five straight days.

Case and death numbers for Wisconsin counties listed by the Wisconsin DHS will be listed later in this article.

Hospitalizations

Another 80 people were hospitalized for COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, according to the DHS. To date, 21,529 people have been hospitalized for COVID-19 treatment since February 5, which is 4.4% of all coronavirus cases. The seven-day average for hospitalizations dropped to 100 Sunday.

The Wisconsin Hospital Association reports there are 1,069 total COVID-19 patients across the state as of Sunday. Out of those, 225 are in the ICU.

The alternate care facility at the state fairgrounds helps relieve the strain on state hospitals by treating patients who are close to being discharged but still need some care, such as oxygen. As of Friday, when officials last updated this figure, 170 patients have been treated at the alternate care facility since it opened on October 14. As of 11 a.m. Sunday, there were no current patients at the facility. There had been three patients there on Saturday.

Hospital Readiness

For hospital readiness, the latest numbers from the Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) say 248 ICU beds (16.91%) and 2,178 of all types of medical beds (19.49%) -- ICU, intermediate care, medical surgical and negative flow isolation -- are open in the state’s 134 hospitals. These beds are for all patients, not just COVID-19, and whether a bed can be filled depends on whether the hospital has the necessary medical and support staff.

In the Fox Valley region, 21 ICU beds (20.19%) and 148 of all medical beds (17.35%) were open among the 13 hospitals in those eight counties.

Meanwhile, the WHA stated in the Northeast region, 14 ICU beds (6.76%) and 188 of all medical beds (19.66%) are open among the 10 hospitals in seven counties.

There’s no change from the WHA report for hospitals with less than a 7-day supply of PPE (personal protective equipment): 19 hospitals need gowns, 12 need paper medical masks, 10 need goggles, and 9 need N95 masks.

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

Wisconsin

  • Adams – 1,318 cases (+2) (11 deaths)
  • Ashland – 1,013 cases (+4) (16 deaths)
  • Barron – 4,534 cases (+21) (57 deaths)
  • Bayfield - 936 cases (+4) (18 deaths)
  • Brown – 26,463 cases (+175) (162 deaths)
  • Buffalo – 1,005 cases (+19) (7 deaths)
  • Burnett – 1,006 cases (+11) (19 deaths)
  • Calumet – 4,722 cases (+18) (35 deaths)
  • Chippewa – 5,972 cases (+49) (66 deaths) (+1)
  • Clark – 2,841 cases (+4) (51 deaths)
  • Columbia – 4,264 cases (+17) (32 deaths)
  • Crawford – 1,560 cases (+4) (12 deaths)
  • Dane – 33,807 cases (+268) (182 deaths) (State revised, decrease of 1)
  • Dodge – 10,465 cases (+14) (125 deaths)
  • Door – 2,065 cases (+24) (13 deaths)
  • Douglas – 3,118 cases (+14) (17 deaths)
  • Dunn – 3,571 cases (+25) (24 deaths) (+1)
  • Eau Claire – 9,375 cases (+80) (77 deaths) (+1)
  • Florence - 399 cases (+1) (12 deaths)
  • Fond du Lac – 10,505 cases (+11) (67 deaths)
  • Forest - 858 cases (+1) (22 deaths)
  • Grant – 4,141 cases (+11) (77 deaths)
  • Green – 2,365 cases (10 deaths)
  • Green Lake - 1,400 cases (+3) (10 deaths)
  • Iowa - 1,678 cases (+7) (7 deaths)
  • Iron - 423 cases (+1) (18 deaths)
  • Jackson - 2,399 cases (18 deaths)
  • Jefferson – 6,732 cases (+4) (57 deaths)
  • Juneau - 2,500 cases (+12) (10 deaths)
  • Kenosha – 12,488 cases (+87) (217 deaths) (+1)
  • Kewaunee – 2,084 cases (+16) (24 deaths)
  • La Crosse – 10,229 cases (+69) (56 deaths)
  • Lafayette - 1,253 cases (+3) (5 deaths)
  • Langlade - 1,803 cases (+3) (30 deaths)
  • Lincoln – 2,506 cases (+32) (46 deaths)
  • Manitowoc – 6,158 cases (+57) (51 deaths)
  • Marathon – 12,092 cases (+79) (160 deaths)
  • Marinette - 3,565 cases (+4) (45 deaths)
  • Marquette – 1,164 cases (+3) (18 deaths)
  • Menominee - 717 cases (+1) (10 deaths)
  • Milwaukee – 85,745 (+218) (984 deaths)
  • Monroe – 3,497 cases (+8) (25 deaths)
  • Oconto – 3,829 cases (+56) (38 deaths)
  • Oneida - 2,830 cases (+15) (47 deaths)
  • Outagamie – 16,335 cases (+169) (159 deaths)
  • Ozaukee - 6,398 cases (+51) (51 deaths)
  • Pepin – 681 cases (5 deaths)
  • Pierce – 2,964 cases (+16) (30 deaths)
  • Polk – 3,102 cases (+58) (23 deaths)
  • Portage – 5,610 cases (+16) (52 deaths) (+1)
  • Price – 956 cases (+13) (5 deaths)
  • Racine – 17,815 cases (+187) (249 deaths)
  • Richland - 1,110 cases (13 deaths)
  • Rock – 12,289 cases (+39) (115 deaths)
  • Rusk - 1,115 cases (+4) (13 deaths)
  • Sauk – 4,545 cases (+34) (27 deaths)
  • Sawyer - 1,251 cases (+19) (11 deaths)
  • Shawano – 4,202 cases (State revised, decrease of 3) (57 deaths)
  • Sheboygan – 11,424 cases (+12) (94 deaths)
  • St. Croix – 5,473 cases (+18) (28 deaths) (+1)
  • Taylor - 1,603 cases (+8) (14 deaths)
  • Trempealeau – 3,007 cases (+19) (29 deaths)
  • Vernon – 1,560 cases (+8) (30 deaths)
  • Vilas - 1,609 cases (21 deaths)
  • Walworth – 7,721 cases (+68) (95 deaths)
  • Washburn – 1,045 cases (+4) (12 deaths)
  • Washington – 11,808 cases (+60) (97 deaths)
  • Waukesha – 34,365 cases (+130) (344 deaths)
  • Waupaca – 4,169 cases (+7) (98 deaths)
  • Waushara – 1,927 cases (+5) (17 deaths)
  • Winnebago – 15,306 cases (+12) (150 deaths)
  • Wood – 5,746 cases (+40) (48 deaths)

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula**

  • Alger - 190 cases (1 death)
  • Baraga - 459 cases (28 deaths)
  • Chippewa - 556 cases (12 deaths)
  • Delta – 2,474 cases (60 deaths)
  • Dickinson - 1,986 cases (54 deaths)
  • Gogebic - 708 cases (15 deaths)
  • Houghton – 1,582 cases (25 deaths)
  • Iron – 769 cases (32 deaths)
  • Keweenaw – 67 cases (1 death)
  • Luce – 127 cases
  • Mackinac - 260 cases (2 deaths)
  • Marquette - 3,139 cases (51 deaths)
  • Menominee - 1,451 cases (25 deaths)
  • Ontonagon – 277 cases (15 deaths)
  • Schoolcraft - 210 cases (3 deaths)

* Cases and deaths are from the daily DHS COVID-19 reports, which may differ from local health department numbers. 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. They 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.

COVID-19 Tracing App

Wisconsin’s COVID-19 tracing app, “Wisconsin Exposure Notification,” is available for iOS and Android smartphones. No download is required for iPhones. The Android app is available on Google Play. When two phones with the app (and presumably their owners) are close enough, for long enough, they’ll anonymously share a random string of numbers via Bluetooth. If someone tests positive for the coronavirus, they’ll receive a code to type into the app. If your phones “pinged” each other in the last 14 days, you’ll receive a push notification that you are at risk of exposure. The app doesn’t collect personal information or location information, so you won’t know from whom or where, but you will be told what day the exposure might have occurred so that you can quarantine for the appropriate amount of time.

COVID-19 Home Testing

Gov. Tony Evers announced at-home COVID-19 testing kits will be made available -- for free -- to anyone who wants them. A person can test themselves or family members, even if they don’t have symptoms, then send it to a lab for testing. The Vault Medical Services kit is the first saliva test to get emergency-use authorization from the FDA and normally costs $119. CLICK HERE for details and a link to request a test kit.

COVID-19 Vaccine

As of Tuesday, December 29, the state says 47,157 COVID-19 vaccines out of the 156,875 vaccines shipped have been administered. The state started giving out the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 14th, with 40,850 of them being administered so far. Moderna vaccinations started Dec. 22nd, and 6,306 of them have been administered. In addition, 29,000 doses will be allocated to vaccinating residents and staff members at long-term care facilities. The state is updating vaccine information at dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/vaccine.htm.

RELATED: Wisconsin starts vaccinating residents, staff in long-term care facilities with help of CVS Health

Wisconsin has also launched a COVID-19 vaccine data page that tracks the number of shots given out and shipped to the state. TRACK STATEWIDE VACCINE DATA HERE: https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/vaccine-data.htm

RELATED: Wisconsin launches COVID vaccine data page

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

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