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COVID-19 hospitalizations rise in Wisconsin, ICU beds scarce

Seven-day rolling average shows 61 additional people hospitalized, 17 more people admitted to ICUs.

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A model of the novel coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China in late 2019. U.S. health officials have stated that COVID-19 is expected to become a significant public health concern in the United States. (Illustration courtesy of Centers for Disease Control)
Contributed / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Hospitalizations as a result of COVID-19 grew to 1,048 people, up from 987 the previous week based on a rolling seven-day average, the state Department of Health Services reported Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Among the people hospitalized, 320 are being treated in intensive care units, up from 303 the week before. About 93.3% of ICU beds are in use, DHS reported.

The news comes as an increasing number of counties are listed as having very high rates of COVID-19 infection for the two-week period that ended Tuesday, Sept. 14. A total of 64 counties fall into the category, DHS reported Wednesday, compared to 56 counties a week ago.

Forest and Buffalo counties have critically high rates of infection, and the remaining counties have high infection rates.

From Sept. 1 to Sept. 14, the state recorded 489.1 new cases per 100,000 people, according to DHS . The very high category means more than 350 but less than 1,000 new cases per 100,000 people were recorded. A high case rate happens when more than 100 but less than 350 new cases are reported per 100,000 people and critically high rates are greater than 1,000 per 100,000 people.

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Closer to home, an additional 460 Northwestern Wisconsin residents tested positive for COVID-19 since Sept. 8, according to DHS.

They were reported as follows: 95 in Rusk County; 73 in Taylor County; 68 in Washburn County; 50 in Douglas County; 44 in Sawyer County; 42 in Price County; 33 in Burnett County; 25 in Ashland County; 19 in Bayfield County; and 11 in Iron County.

Statewide, an additional 12,853 new cases were reported in the last week, DHS said, bringing the total to 687,101 Wednesday.

The seven-day average of new cases continued to climb to 1,864, up 355 from the previous week. The seven-day average of positive cases measures the average number of new cases per day over the previous week. An increase in the seven-day average of positive cases indicates the number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in the state is going up, according to DHS.

An additional 40 deaths were reported statewide since Sept. 8, DHS said, including one person in Rusk County. Since the start of the pandemic, 7,791 Wisconsinites have died from COVID-19.

The number of negative tests in the state was 3,233,018 Wednesday, an increase of 42,649 since Sept. 8.

DHS also reports that 6,238,991 doses of vaccine have been administered by Wednesday. A total of 3,252,870 Wisconsin residents have received at least one dose of vaccine, and 3,060,694 people, 52.6% of the population, have completed the vaccine series.

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Here's the breakdown in the 10-county region:

Ashland County

  • Total cases: 1,367
  • Total negative tests: 8,380
  • Deaths: 15
  • Probable deaths: 1
  • Hospitalizations: 60
  • Vaccinations: 9,523

Bayfield County

  • Total cases: 1,266
  • Total negative tests: 8,355
  • Deaths: 20
  • Probable deaths: 2
  • Hospitalizations: 61
  • Vaccinations: 9,955

Burnett County

  • Total cases: 1,608
  • Total negative tests: 7,446
  • Deaths: 29
  • Probable deaths: 0
  • Hospitalizations: 153
  • Vaccinations: 7,681

Douglas County

  • Total cases: 4,394
  • Total negative tests: 22,741
  • Deaths: 44
  • Probable deaths: 22
  • Hospitalizations: 212
  • Vaccinations: 25,379

Iron County

  • Total cases: 639
  • Total negative tests: 3,016
  • Deaths: 21
  • Probable deaths: 21
  • Hospitalizations: 52
  • Vaccinations: 3,302

Price County

  • Total cases: 1,377
  • Total negative tests: 6,627
  • Deaths: 8
  • Probable deaths: 0
  • Hospitalizations: 108
  • Vaccinations: 6,752

Rusk County

  • Total cases: 1,625
  • Total negative tests: 6,008
  • Deaths: 27
  • Probable deaths: 0
  • Hospitalizations: 126
  • Vaccinations: 5,207

Sawyer County

  • Total cases: 1,944
  • Total negative tests: 10,116
  • Deaths: 27
  • Probable deaths: 2
  • Hospitalizations: 111
  • Vaccinations: 8,557

Taylor County

  • Total cases: 2,258
  • Total negative tests: 7,201
  • Deaths: 28
  • Probable deaths: 13
  • Hospitalizations: 140
  • Vaccinations: 6,370

Washburn County

  • Total cases: 1,702
  • Total negative tests: 8,146
  • Deaths: 23
  • Probable deaths: 2
  • Hospitalizations: 136
  • Vaccinations: 9,140

Visit the Douglas County COVID-19 dashboard or Wisconsin Department of Health Services COVID-19 page for updates.

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