Monday, August 24, 2020

Two Wisconsins on COVID. Biggest places improving, Fox Valley and WashCo getting worse

It's been yet another week in Wisconsin where some parts of the state continued to see COVID-19 cases decline, while others saw more infections than ever.

In Milwaukee and Madison, the breakouts continue to lessen. And in a welcome change, Waukesha County also saw a notable decline in new cases over the last 7 days.

Some of this may be related to fewer tests, as the percentage of positive tests statewide is at their highest levels in several weeks. But at least these large-population counties are matching the state's decline in reported new cases. That is not the case for the 4th-largest population county in the state, which is home to a resurgence generating out of the state's Correctional system.
The number of positive COVID-19 cases this week at the Green Bay Correctional Institution has surged to 180, an increase of 123 above the number reported on Tuesday.

The state Department of Corrections said 57 inmates and six employees at the prison had tested positive within the last week. Since then, the National Guard was on hand to test all inmates, another 123 inmates have tested positive. The total number of positive cases is 12% of the 1,538 tests administered.

A department spokesman on Tuesday said the source of the outbreak is unknown. All cases are active, and no one infected with the virus has died.
Brown County ended up having 464 new COVID cases last week, levels that mirror the amount of new cases that we saw in food packing plants in and around Titletown in late April and early May.

Brown County wasn't the only part of eastern Wisconsin that saw increases in new cases. In fact, you could go right down I-41 between Green Bay and metro Milwaukee, and 3 of the counties you would go through were places that hit record highs for new cases last week.

The next few weeks will feature a sick sort of experiment. as students return to UW campuses with many being tested for COVID as they arrive. And then those students will be tested again in the weeks following, as they come into contact with others on campus, so we'll see if UW can handle the COVID World better than other campuses that have already stopped in-person instruction.

At the same time, younger students and their teachers will be starting school across the state, including in some communities that have been seeing higher levels of cases and lower levels of interest in adhering to the state's mask mandate. We've gotta be smart if we're going to crush this thing, and it only takes a couple of bad weeks to remove the progress that has been made in a lot of population centers of the state.

1 comment:

  1. Just when I thought there would be no lawsuit over Evers’ statewide mask mandate, there’s a lawsuit over the statewide mask mandate. Filed by three Wisconsinites in two western counties. Go figure.