Graham Kilmer
MKE County

COVID-19 Declining to Summer Levels

Daily new cases are reaching levels last seen during late-summer lull in 2020.

By - Feb 26th, 2021 05:12 pm
Milwaukee County daily number of COVID-19 cases

Milwaukee County daily number of COVID-19 cases

COVID-19 has been trending downward in Milwaukee County for nearly two months.

The latest data from a team of epidemiologists and faculty at the Medical College of Wisconsin and UW-Milwaukee shows a continued decrease in COVID-19 in the community.

Daily new cases continue to go down. In the past week there were 435 new cases of COVID-19 identified. Daily new cases are reaching levels last seen during the lull at the end of summer in 2020.

The county’s positivity rate, which measures what percent of tests come back positive for COVID-19 is holding relatively steady. Two weeks ago it was 3.5%. This past week it was 3.4%.

Testing has been going down for months. Darren Rausch, director of the Greenfield Health Department, said testing is approximately one-third of what it was at its peak in November.

Testing has dropped so low that the City of Milwaukee recently reduced its testing availability at American Family Field from five days a week to three. The site is now open Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The transmission rate, an important measure of the spread of COVID-19 in the community, continues to indicate suppression of the disease in the county. The rate measures, on average, how many people a single case will infect. A rate below 1.0, which the county is currently maintaining, means each new case of COVID-19 will produce, on average, fewer than one additional case.

Deaths have declined, but are holding relatively steady in recent weeks. Over the past three weeks the county saw a weekly death rate of 13, then 12, then nine.

The majority of cases in the county continue to be among young people 25-39, which is also the age group that has the highest rate of cases. White people have the biggest number of cases. The Hispanic community has the highest rate of cases. Black residents continue to have a disproportionately high number of hospitalizations. Hospitalizations and deaths continue to climb for American Indian and Alaskan Native residents, who now have the highest rates for both.

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Categories: Health

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