Wisconsin shatters high for new COVID-19 cases, averaging nearly 3,000/day

Published: Oct. 15, 2020 at 2:25 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - More new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Wisconsin on Thursday than any previous day - by far. The Dept. of Health Services recorded 3,747 more people have tested positive, beating the previous high, set just two days ago, by nearly 500 cases.

That’s more cases than the agency was reporting in an entire week at the beginning of July.

The extraordinarily high number cases reported drove the state’s seven-day rolling average to 2,927 cases per day, itself a new record and higher than all but five individual days. The latest positive tests push the total number of people who have tested positive in the state to 162,325, DHS numbers show.

Nearly one in four of the 15,202 tests recorded by DHS on Thursday were positive, the agency stated. Over the past week, that percentage is lower, but stil remains above the 20 percent mark

In a news conference with Gov. Tony Evers, DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm zeroed in on hospitalizations, saying the number of people hospitalized because of the virus has topped 1,000 for the first time. With 138 more patients admitted in the past day, the agency’s most recent figures pegged the number of people hospitalized right now because of COVID-19 at 1,017, with 246 of them in intensive care.

Since the pandemic began 8,892 people who tested positive had to be hospitalized.

She explained the recent surge has weighed heavily on the state’s hospital, with some reporting being at 90 percent capacity or more and all hospitals reporting shortages. DHS figures show 84 percent of all hospital beds in Wisconsin are currently in use.


Seventeen more deaths were recorded Thursday. From the beginning of June through Sept. 29, Wisconsin never had a day with that many deaths. Since that day, however, it has hit or eclipsed that number nine times, reaching a high of 34 deaths on Tuesday. An average of 18 people died each day over the past week, which Palm noted is three-times higher than the seven day rolling average three weeks ago.

With the latest deaths, 1,553 people have died from complications related to the virus.

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