COVID-19 in Wisconsin: 77 new COVID-19 deaths pushes seven-day average to new high

As numbers trend down in other key areas, COVID-19 deaths are still on the rise in Wisconsin, data released on Saturday shows.

The seven-day average for deaths from the disease hit 60 on Saturday, an all-time high, as the state reported another 74 deaths.

Deaths, which typically lag behind case spikes, saw a dip around the holiday, but have continued to push higher in recent days. Other numbers, like new cases and the positivity rate, have trended lower in recent days, however.

Friday, Wisconsin surpassed 400,000 total COVID-19 cases. There have been 3.702 deaths from COVID-19 this year and more than 18,000 hospitalizations. Officials report 343, 481 patients have recovered from the disease, which accounts for 83.9 percent of total cases.

This week, health officials announced they would adopt new guidelines from the CDC requiring only ten-day quarantines after exposure to COVID-19, if a patient isn't showing symptoms. The change was made with hopes of making it more feasible for people to follow quarantine guidelines.

The pandemic so far

COVID-19 infections can often go undetected and be asymptomatic; laboratory-confirmed tests only represent a fraction of actual COVID-19 cases. A study from the Journal of the American Medical Association estimated that actual cases in some instances were six to 24 times greater than reported cases.

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers announced an indoor mask mandate for people over the age of 5, which he extended until November 21.  Face coverings while indoors except at a private residence have been required since Aug. 1.

Evers extended the state's stay-at-home order until May 26, but on May 13, the state Supreme Court blocked the extension, effectively opening all establishments in the state. Hours later, images emerged of packed bars across the state, leading the Governor to call his state "The Wild West." Evers' original "Safer at Home" order went into effect on March 25. In October, a judge did however allow Evers' mask mandate to remain in effect.

On April 4, President Donald Trump approved a disaster declaration for Wisconsin due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This declaration allows for federal funding to be allocated to state, tribal and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations that were impacted by the virus.

For more information, go to the state health department's website.

If you have questions or immediate needs related to COVID-19, you can Text COVID19 to 211-211, visit or call 211. Call volumes are high, so officials are asking people to be patient and try to use the text or online options first. 

If you are experiencing signs and symptoms of COVID-19, health officials advise you to call your health care provider.