COVID-19 cases stable in Dane Co. as hospitalizations drop

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – Dane Co. COVID-19 cases remain stable over the past week, while the number of people in the county’s hospitals continued its recent declines, local health officials reported. In its weekly summary, Public Health Madison and Dane Co. indicated the number of cases counted over the past two weeks did slip somewhat from 76 per day down to 63 per day.

Data released Thursday by the Dept. of Health Services showed Dane Co. had, by far, the highest number of cases per day of any county in the state. DHS uses a seven-day rolling average and tracks cases differently. As a result, it showed Dane Co. averaging 39 cases per day. The next closest was the much larger Milwaukee Co., which has an average of 33 cases per day. Waukesha Co. (22) was the only other county averaging more than a dozen cases per day.

PHMDC weekly snapshot pointed out that the prevalence of at-home tests and the possibility that people are simply taking a test at-home and not getting an official PCR test, which would then be entered into the agency’s database as well as those who do not get tested means their dashboard may not reflect all cases in the county. The percentage of tests coming back positive (3.2%) does serve as an encouraging sign that health officials are finding out about most new cases in the community.

Hospitalizations maintained their downward trend, falling from a two-week average of 42 patients in hospitals for COVID-19 or related symptoms. That’s down from 76 people reported last week. PHMDC notes that the number reflects all patients in Dane Co. hospitals, not just county residents, because they are unable to determine each patient’s hometown. Over the four weeks leading up to March 13, the agency has reported nine COVID-19-related deaths.

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