COVID-19 Snapshot: National Deaths Soar, WI Trends Down, Vaccinations Arrive

COVID-19 Snapshot: National Deaths Soar, WI Trends Down, Vaccinations Arrive

We will start the week with that peek into public health. On the national level, the coronavirus death toll keeps climbing. 

The COVID Tracking Project reports that over 16-hundred Americans died from the respiratory virus on Sunday.  That brings the nation’s death toll to more than 317-thousand people.  There was a slight decline in the number of people hospitalized in the U.S., down to over 113-thousand.  More than 21-thousand of those patients are in intensive care units.

Here in our state, however, Wisconsin’s coronavirus numbers are heading down.

The state’s Department of Health Services yesterday said the seven-day positive rate is now down below 10-percent. It was 18-percent at the beginning of November. DHS yesterday reported 18-hundred new positives and 18 deaths. There are over 12-hundred people in the hospital with the virus in Wisconsin, including 292 in the ICU.

 The next round of the coronavirus vaccine in Wisconsin will go to essential workers, but that could be a long list. State and local public health managers say the list of essential workers includes people who work in education, agriculture, utilities, and transportation, as well police, firefighters, corrections officers. Ther

e is no specific count as to just how many people fall into the category of essential worker. Dr. Ben Weston with the Milwaukee County Office of Emergency Management last week said public health officials are going to have to decide who in each group will get the vaccine, then decide who will get it first. Wisconsin is currently vaccinating healthcare workers, then will turn to older people in nursing homes, then will turn to essential workers for the option to get the shot.

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