Wisconsin Hits Record Daily Deaths, Bringing Death Toll to 3,420

Health

Wisconsin Hits Record Daily Deaths, Bringing Death Toll to 3,420

By Frederica Freyberg

December 1, 2020

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This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S. Virus particles are shown emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab. The spikes on the outer edge of the virus particles give coronaviruses their name, crown-like. (Courtesy: NIAID-RML)

This transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S. Virus particles are shown emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab. The spikes on the outer edge of the virus particles give coronaviruses their name, crown-like. (Courtesy: NIAID-RML)


Wisconsin hit a record daily number of COVID-19 deaths Tuesday, with the state Department of Health Services reporting 107 people died of the virus.

That brings the total number of deaths to 3,420 as of Dec. 1.

Daily positive tests were reported at 4,078 and DHS officials said hospitals across the state are reporting current and imminent shortages of health care workers.

The seven-day average has declined according to the numbers, but it would be premature to declare it good news, according to state epidemiologist Dr. Ryan Westergaard.

“Our standard of wanting to see that less than 5% or ideally less than 1% as a marker of ‘we’re testing enough people’ and ‘we have a good handle on transmission,’ we’re still far, far above that,” said Westergaard.

Testing waned over Thanksgiving, but health officials say to continue to be vigilant.

“If you hosted or attended a gathering over the long holiday weekend, please take steps to stop the spread this week by quarantining, do not interact with people that you do not live with…if you’ve been exposed, we suggest getting a test three to five days after the exposure and not any earlier,” said Andrea Palm, DHS secretary-designee.

Meanwhile, Wisconsin continues to plan for vaccine distribution but awaits for the vaccine candidates to receive federal approval for emergency use. Health care providers, pharmacies and drive-through sites would all provide doses when the vaccines become widely available, Palm said.

Gov. Tony Evers is expected to meet with legislative leaders later Tuesday to discuss COVID-19 response legislation, saying he would like to see if they have further ideas to propose.

“And the other question I’ll be asking is if indeed there are some pieces of legislation that we can or pieces of the puzzle that we can all agree on, are they willing to come into session sometime? In December, middle of December, hopefully,” Evers said.


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