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Fewer counties listed in 'critically high' COVID-19 infection category

Thirteen additional deaths have been reported over the last two weeks in Northwest Wisconsin, DHS data shows.

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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

The number of counties reporting critically high rates of COVID-19 infection dropped to 30 from 26 the previous week, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services reported Wednesday, Dec. 1.

Six counties in Northwestern Wisconsin were still among those reporting critically high case numbers: Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Price, Sawyer and Washburn counties. The critically high category means more than 1,000 new cases per 100,000 residents have been reported in the last two weeks.

Statewide, an additional 42,199 new cases were reported since Nov. 17, DHS said, bringing the total to 879,614 Wednesday. Of those cases, 22,296 were reported between Nov. 17 and Nov. 24 and 19,903 were reported through Dec. 1, according to DHS data. The case rate from Nov. 17-30 was 852.8 per 100,000 people, data shows .

Closer to home, an additional 1,456 Northwestern Wisconsin residents tested positive for COVID-19 over since Nov. 17, DHS said.

They were reported as follows: 309 in Douglas County; 200 in Washburn County; 185 each in Burnett and Sawyer counties; 157 in Taylor County; 131 in Price County; 105 in Rusk County; 81 in Bayfield County; 70 in Ashland County; 33 in Iron County. While most counties reported fewer new cases the week of Nov. 24 to Dec. 1, Iron and Rusk counties had higher rates of new infections from the previous week.

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The seven-day average of new cases in Wisconsin 2,796 was on Wednesday, down from 2,963 on Nov. 17. The figure measures the average number of new cases per day over the previous week. A decrease indicates the number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in the state is going down, according to DHS.

Hospitalizations as a result of COVID-19 rose to 1,336 people, DHS reported Wednesday, up from 1,094 on Nov. 16 based on a rolling seven-day average.

Among the people hospitalized, 364 people were being treated in intensive care units, up from 301 on Nov. 17, DHS reported.

An additional 223 people died from complications related to COVID-19 statewide since Nov. 17, the data showed. Among those who died were three people in Price County; two people each in Ashland, Bayfield and Taylor counties; and one person each in Iron, Rusk, Sawyer and Washburn counties. Since the start of the pandemic, 9,052 Wisconsinites have died from COVID-19.

The number of negative tests in the state was 3,688,705 Wednesday, an increase of 64,003 since Nov. 17.

Since vaccines became available, 7,697,130 vaccines have been administered, and 1,036,814 booster shots have been administered. About 56.1% of Wisconsin's population is fully vaccinated.

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

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Ashland County

  • Total cases: 1,678
  • Total negative tests: 9,501
  • Hospitalized: 87
  • Deaths: 18
  • Probable deaths: 4
  • Vaccinated: 61.6%

Bayfield County

  • Total cases: 1,586
  • Total negative tests: 9,377
  • Hospitalized: 111
  • Deaths: 24
  • Probable deaths: 5
  • Vaccinated: 66.3%

Burnett County

  • Total cases: 2,437
  • Total negative tests: 8,551
  • Hospitalized: 196
  • Deaths: 32
  • Probable deaths: 1
  • Vaccinated: 50.4%

Douglas County

  • Total cases: 5,595
  • Total negative tests: 25,720
  • Hospitalized: 267
  • Deaths: 44
  • Probable deaths: 22
  • Vaccinated: 58.9%

Iron County

  • Total cases: 784
  • Total negative tests: 3,376
  • Hospitalized: 63
  • Deaths: 22
  • Probable deaths: 21
  • Vaccinated: 58.1%

Price County

  • Total cases: 2,040
  • Total negative tests: 7,393
  • Hospitalized: 167
  • Deaths: 16
  • Probable deaths: 0
  • Vaccinated: 52.7%

Rusk County

  • Total cases: 2,330
  • Total negative tests: 6,825
  • Hospitalized: 179
  • Deaths: 36
  • Probable deaths: 0
  • Vaccinated: 38.3%

Sawyer County

  • Total cases: 2,826
  • Total negative tests: 11,283
  • Hospitalized: 157
  • Deaths: 35
  • Probable deaths: 4
  • Vaccinated: 52.4%

Taylor County

  • Total cases: 3,119
  • Total negative tests: 8,363
  • Hospitalized: 201
  • Deaths: 36
  • Probable deaths: 13
  • Vaccinated: 32.1%

Washburn County

  • Total cases: 2,603
  • Total negative tests: 9,406
  • Hospitalized: 182
  • Deaths: 27
  • Probable deaths: 2
  • Vaccinated: 59.7%

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

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