covid WI map

Wisconsin is on track to hit the 10,000 COVID-19 death milestone before the new year, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (WDHS), Polk County’s current contribution to this number is 94.

WDHS reported 29 new COVID-19 deaths on Christmas Eve, bringing the total to 9,915. Wisconsin’s seven-day average is 37.

New deaths were reported Friday in the counties of Calumet, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Manitowoc, Marinette, Waupaca and Winnebago.

Wisconsin added 4,173 new positive cases of COVID-19 on Christmas Eve, edging the seven-day average up to 3,583.

WDHS said as of December 24, 2021, there have been 9,017 confirmed cases of COVID 19 in Polk County. St. Croix County has reached 15,196 cases with 103 deaths. Barron County has confirmed 9,899 cases with 112 deaths. Burnett County has confirmed 2,669 cases with 10 deaths.

COVID-19 activity is Critically High in 39 counties, including Polk, Burnett and St. Croix Counties. Activity level is Very High in 33 counties.

The categorization means there is there is a critically high burden of the number of cases per 100,000 people.

The state says there is no significant change in hospitalizations and ICU patients. Overall hospital capacity shows 93 percent of beds in use and 96.5 percent of ICU beds in use.

Omicron is the predominant strain among new COVID-19 cases nationwide. Omnicron was first detected in Wisconsin December 4, 2021. A male from Milwaukee County tested positive for Omicron after a recent trip to South Africa. Officials said the man was fully vaccinated and had recently received his booster shot.

Governor Tony Evers responded, saying, “Now is the time to double down on our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19, including the Omicron variant. I urge all eligible Wisconsinites to get vaccinated and receive a booster dose as soon as possible and to follow the latest public health guidance.”

The Omicron variant was first identified in South Africa and has since been classified as a variant of concern by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Variants are identified through a process called whole genome sequencing. Whole genome sequencing takes a sample of the virus from a positive SARS-CoV-2 test specimen and reads its genetic code to determine the genetic makeup of the virus. WDHS, the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene, and other laboratory partners regularly perform whole genome sequencing on a portion of positive tests.

Nearly 8.5 million COVID-19 vaccinations have been given in Wisconsin. The state has recorded 1.5 million booster shots.

The state says 61.7 percent of residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 58 percent have completed their vaccine series.

December 24, 2021 VACCINATIONS BY AGE GROUP (and change since last report)

• 5 to 11: 20% received vaccine (+0.2)/13.8% completed vaccinations (+0.2)

• 12 to 17: 56.6% received vaccine (+0.1)/51.9% completed vaccinations (+0.1)

• 18 to 24: 56.3% received vaccine (+0.1)/51.3% completed vaccinations (+0.0)

• 25 to 34: 60.9% received vaccine (+0.1)/56.4% completed vaccinations (+0.0)

• 35 to 44: 66.8% received vaccine (+0.0)/63.2% completed vaccinations (+0.1)

• 45 to 54: 69.7% received vaccine (+0.1)/66.6% completed vaccinations (+0.0)

• 55 to 64: 76.7% received vaccine (+0.1)/73.8% completed vaccinations (+0.0)

• 65 and up: 85.4% received vaccine (+0.1)/82.0% completed vaccinations (+0.0)

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