COVID-19 Numbers Continue To Decline As Pandemic Continues To Ease

DHS Reports 3 Deaths

Respiratory Therapist Receives COVID Vaccine
Aspirus Respiratory Therapist Brittany Puziewicz receives one of the first COVID-19 vaccines at Aspirus Wausau Hospital on Dec. 22, 2020. Photo courtesy of Aspirus

New reports of COVID-19 cases are on the decline in Wisconsin, based on the latest data published by the state Department of Health Services.

DHS reported 293 new cases of the disease Saturday, bringing the average for the past seven days to 337 daily cases.

There were 3,598 negative tests reported Saturday.

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As COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin continue to decline, more of the state’s residents are being vaccinated against the disease.

A total of 5,023,716 doses of the coronavirus vaccine have been administered in Wisconsin as of Saturday, with 78.5 percent of Wisconsinites age 65 and up fully vaccinated. DHS numbers say 13.1 percent of the state’s 12- to 15-year-olds have had their first doses of vaccine. That age group became eligible May 13.

As of Saturday, 2,370,785 people in Wisconsin, or 40.7 percent of the population, have been fully vaccinated.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or two weeks after a single-dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

Increasing rates of vaccination have provided a sense of hope after a yearlong pandemic that has claimed the lives of 6,989 people in Wisconsin. There were three new deaths from COVID-19 reported Saturday.

Other DHS data from Saturday include:

  • 608,285 total cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began.
  • 3,533,123 total tests administered, 2,924,838 of which have been negative since the pandemic began.
  • 30,620 people have been hospitalized because of the disease, or 5 percent of all positive cases, since the pandemic began.
  • Daily testing capacity remains at 59,273, though only 3,891 new test results were reported Saturday.

Declining COVID-19 numbers comes as a state health official said Wisconsin might not reach herd immunity from COVID-19 until fall if vaccination rates continue to trend downward. DHS Julie Willems Van Dijk said earlier this spring that 70 percent of Wisconsin’s population would need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity and the state could reach that benchmark by July.

Coronavirus rates vary from county to county. In order to track COVID-19 activity levels, DHS looks at the number of new cases per a county’s population over a 14-day period — and whether there’s an upward or downward trend in new cases. Activity levels range from “very high,” “high,” “medium,” to “low.”

As of Wednesday, DHS data showed the state had one county — Polk — with a “very high” level, while the majority of Wisconsin counties had “high” levels of activity. There were growing case trajectories in one county and shrinking trajectories in 12. Wisconsin’s overall COVID-19 activity level is “high.”

For more about COVID-19, visit Coronavirus in Wisconsin.