COVID-19 in Wisconsin: 26 counties have high community levels

30 other counties are at an elevated level
CDC map of COVID-19 community levels in Wisconsin for the week ending July 29, 2022
CDC map of COVID-19 community levels in Wisconsin for the week ending July 29, 2022(CDC via Wisconsin DHS)
Published: Jul. 29, 2022 at 2:49 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 29, 2022 at 4:21 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WBAY) – Data compiled by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show the COVID-19 problem in Wisconsin worsened over the past week. The CDC says 26 counties have high community levels of COVID-19; 30 have elevated, or medium, levels; while a minority, 16, have low levels. These are based on new cases per capita, hospitalizations for COVID-19, and the percentage of hospital beds occupied by COVID-19 patients over the past week.

The news looks better in our corner of Wisconsin. Half of the 16 counties with low community levels of the COVID-19 virus are in WBAY’s wider viewing area. Eleven counties in our corner of Wisconsin have medium levels. Just one, Forest County, is in the high category. This is a slight improvement for our area over the previous week, when two counties -- Brown and Door -- were labeled high.

Counties we’re tracking in WBAY’s viewing area are in boldface:

High: Barron, Columbia, Crawford, Dane, Dunn, Eau Claire, Forest, Grant, Green, Iowa, La Crosse, Lafayette, Marathon, Marquette, Milwaukee, Monroe, Oneida, Pepin, Rock, Rusk, Sauk, Taylor, Trempealeau, Vilas, Waukesha, Wood (26)

Medium: Bayfield, Brown, Buffalo, Burnett, Chippewa, Clark, Door, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Iron, Jackson, Kenosha, Langlade, Lincoln, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Ozaukee, Polk, Portage, Racine, Richland, Sawyer, Shawano, Vernon, Walworth, Washburn, Washington, Waushara, Winnebago (30)

Low: Adams, Ashland, Calumet, Dodge, Douglas, Florence, Jefferson, Juneau, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Outagamie, Pierce, Price, St. Croix, Sheboygan, Waupaca (16)

Last week, 16 counties had high community COVID-19 levels, 38 had medium levels, while 18 were “in the green.”

The 7-day average of new cases in Wisconsin went down slightly for a second straight day, from 1,797 per day to 1,785. That rolling average recently peaked at 1,801 cases per day on Wednesday, the first time it went over 1,800 since the first week of June. The DHS says 1,884 new COVID-19 cases were confirmed by the latest tests. At the beginning of July, Wisconsin averaged 1,375 cases per day.

The positivity rate is 14.8% after hitting 15% on Thursday. That’s the rolling 7-day average of all tests which come back positive for the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

Two COVID-19 deaths were reported. The state says 1 was recent, the other happened more than 30 days ago. Wisconsin is averaging 3 COVID-19 deaths per day, which is relatively low during this pandemic. The death rate fell to 0.84% as more patients survive their infection. That’s the lowest death rate since early February during the omicron surge. Contrarily, 27 deaths, recent and not, were submitted to the DHS in the last 7 days, the most deaths reported in one week since the week ending June 17.

DHS numbers show 55 people were hospitalized for COVID-19 in the past 24-hour period, well above our calculated 7-day average of 44 per day.

Discharges and deaths outnumbered new admissions. The Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) reported 482 COVID-19 patients in hospitals on Friday, 15 fewer than the day before after being on the verge of 500 COVID-19 patients for the first time since March 1. The WHA reported 85 of the patients are in intensive care, 7 more than Thursday.

In the Northeast health care region, 10 hospitals are treating 49 patients, 2 more than a day earlier, with the number in ICU unchanged at 10. In the Fox Valley region, 13 hospitals are treating 32 COVID-19 patients, 1 more than Thursday, with the number in ICU unchanged at 4.

We reported yesterday that Wisconsin passed 10 million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered. This includes the regiment of shots for vaccinations and booster doses.

Friday’s Vaccinations by Age Group (and change since last report)

  • 5 to 11: 28.7% received vaccine/25.9% (+0.1) completed vaccinations/0.0% received booster
  • 12 to 17: 62.2% received vaccine/58.8% completed vaccinations/21.8% received booster
  • 18 to 24: 61.0% received vaccine/55.5% (+0.1) completed vaccinations/20.4% received booster
  • 25 to 34: 64.9% (+0.1) received vaccine/60.3% completed vaccinations/26.3% received booster
  • 35 to 44: 69.7% received vaccine/66.3% completed vaccinations/33.9% received booster
  • 45 to 54: 72.0% received vaccine/69.2% completed vaccinations/39.0% received booster
  • 55 to 64: 78.3% received vaccine/75.9% completed vaccinations/50.3% received booster
  • 65 and up: 85.1% received vaccine/82.5% completed vaccinations/68.5% received booster

Florence County reached half of its population completing their vaccine series; 52.3% have started their vaccinations.

Friday’s Vaccinations by County Population (and change since last report)

County (Population)
(Health region)
% of population
with at least 1 dose
% of population
completed series
Brown (264,610) (NE)66.1%63.5%
Calumet (50,209) (FV)57.1%55.2% (+0.1)
Dodge (87,336)52.8%50.7%
Door (27,889) (NE)79.2%75.5%
Florence (4,298) (NE)52.3%50.0% (+0.1)
Fond du Lac (102,902) (SE)56.1%53.8% (+0.1)
Forest (8,960)53.3%50.8%
Green Lake (18,908) (FV)57.8%55.2%
Kewaunee (20,386) (NE)52.7%51.4%
Langlade (19,119)54.2%52.1%
Manitowoc (78,757) (NE)60.9%58.8%
Marinette (40,262) (NE)53.8%51.6%
Menominee (4,546) (FV)81.8% (+0.1)78.5%
Oconto (38,383) (NE)53.3%51.6%
Outagamie (188,766) (FV)64.7%62.1%
Shawano (40,786) (FV)48.1%46.6%
Sheboygan (115,240) (SE)63.3%60.9%
Waupaca (50,664) (FV)55.8%53.9%
Waushara (24,326) (FV)46.5%44.6%
Winnebago (171,631) (FV)62.6%59.9% (+0.1)
NORTHEAST REGION (474,585) (NE)300,063 (63.2%)288,694 (60.8%)
FOX VALLEY REGION (549,836) (FV)332,093 (60.4%)318,884 (58.0%)
WISCONSIN (5,832,655)3,769,144 (64.6%)3,585,698 (61.5%)

To find free COVID-19 vaccination sites near you, text your ZIP Code to 438829. Visit wbay.com/vaccine for a list of health care organizations offering vaccine shots.

FRIDAY’S COUNTY CASE AND DEATH TOTALS* (boldface indicates change since last report)

  • Brown – 76,401 cases (+142) (431 deaths)
  • Calumet – 12,375 cases (+9) (102 deaths)
  • Dickinson (Mich.)** - 5,376 cases (92 deaths)
  • Dodge – 26,129 cases (+52) (296 deaths)
  • Door – 7,303 cases (+7) (62 deaths)
  • Florence - 861 cases (+1) (17 deaths)
  • Fond du Lac – 32,155 cases (+32) (263 deaths)
  • Forest - 2,697 cases (cases revised -1 by state) (48 deaths)
  • Gogebic (Mich.)** - 3,108 cases (41 deaths)
  • Green Lake - 4,741 cases (+10) (56 deaths)
  • Iron (Mich.)** - 2,553 cases (71 deaths)
  • Kewaunee – 4,826 cases (+3) (43 deaths)
  • Langlade - 5,413 cases (+8) (75 deaths)
  • Manitowoc – 18,985 cases (+24) (164 deaths)
  • Marinette - 10,426 cases (+18) (112 deaths)
  • Menominee – 2,012 cases (+2) (15 deaths)
  • Menominee (Mich.)** - 4,233 cases (61 deaths)
  • Oconto – 9,840 cases (+9) (99 deaths)
  • Outagamie – 46,202 cases (+57) (364 deaths)
  • Shawano – 10,625 cases (+9) (131 deaths)
  • Sheboygan – 32,171 cases (+41) (277 deaths)
  • Waupaca – 12,286 cases (+14) (200 deaths)
  • Waushara – 5,438 cases (+9) (70 deaths)
  • Winnebago – 48,571 cases (+54) (343 deaths)

* You can find cases and deaths for all 72 Wisconsin counties on the DHS County Data website and for Michigan counties on the Michigan Department of Health COVID-19 website.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services and Wisconsin Hospital Association publish updates Mondays through Fridays. Michigan Department of Health updates county information on Tuesdays.

Cases and deaths are from state COVID-19 reports, which may differ from local health department numbers. The Wisconsin 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.

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