- The number of coronavirus cases in Wisconsin is skyrocketing, leaving many hospitals operating at full capacity.
- As a result, Wisconsin is opening up a 530-bed field hospital near Milwaukee to help to ease the strain on hospitals.
- The coronavirus death rate in Wisconsin is now double what it was back in July and August.
The coronavirus situation in Wisconsin has gotten so bad that government officials there recently decided to open up a 530-bed field hospital just outside of Milwaukee. The goal behind the decision is to help ease the strain hospitals are experiencing due to a massive influx of coronavirus patients. In short, Wisconsin over the past few weeks has become one of the worst hotspots for coronavirus outbreaks in the country.
“We obviously hoped this day wouldn’t come,” Wisconsin Governor Tony Eversbut said regarding the field hospital, “but unfortunately Wisconsin is in a much different and more dire place today and our health care systems are being overwhelmed.”
The 530-bed facility, built last spring, is located at the Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis, just west of Milwaukee. It will not accept walk-in patients, but will treat patients who are transitioning out of the hospital and require less medical care, Ever said.
A total of 55 of Wisconsin’s 72 counties meet the threshold of very high disease activity level, an increase of 10 counties over the last week. Wisconsin’s remaining counties are at a high activity level, Wisconsin Department of Health Services Secretary-designee Andrea Palm said.
The coronavirus data in Wisconsin is jarring, to say the least. Whereas many states saw the coronavirus peak months ago, the number of COVID-19 cases and associated deaths hit record highs in Wisconsin this month.
From March to the end of June, Wisconsin was seeing about 400 new coronavirus cases per day. Once the state started opening back up, however, it didn’t take long for the infection rate to skyrocket. By the end of September, the infection rate had spiked to about 2500 new cases per day. What’s more, the death rate in October is about double what it was from July through August.
In a statement delivered yesterday, Evers noted that the number of coronavirus hospitalizations jumped from 71 on Monday to 853 on Wednesday.
In addition to the field hospital, Evers earlier this week issued an order which restricts restaurants and other public places from operating at more than 25% capacity. The order went into effect this morning and will remain in place until early November. Businesses that violate the order will be subject to fines.
“We’re in a crisis right now and need to immediately change our behavior to save lives” Evers explained. “We are continuing to experience a surge in cases and many of our hospitals are overwhelmed, and I believe limiting indoor public gatherings will help slow the spread of this virus. Folks, we need your help and we need all Wisconsinites to work together during this difficult time.”
According to reports, the reason behind the coronavirus outbreak in Wisconsin is that many people in the state, for whatever reason, have been quick to disregard basic coronavirus safety measures. People aren’t wearing masks, are congregating en masse, and are not adhering to social distancing guidelines.
Not surprisingly, if you take a look at a list of states that have done the least to implement coronavirus safety restrictions, Wisconsin makes the cut.