Gov. Tony Evers has extended Wisconsin’s stay-at-home order that was originally slated to expire at the end of April for another month. The Evers extension issued April 16 keeps non-essential businesses closed until May 26 to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Schools will remain closed for the remainder of the academic year. The latest order does allow golf courses to open and for nonessential businesses to make deliveries and have curbside pickup available. That includes arts and crafts stores making material available to produce face masks and other personal protective equipment.
News of the extension comes amid growing criticism from conservatives who are pushing Evers, and governors in other states, to loosen restrictions to more quickly reopen states. Opponents of the order planned a rally at the state Capitol on April 24, the end date of the original order.
We’ve compiled the need-to-know information and resources to keep you and your family informed and safe. You can find all of ABC7’s latest reporting on the COVID-19 outbreak here.
TRACKING CORONAVIRUS IN WISCONSIN:
April 26, 2020
Positive COVID-19 cases nearly 6K in Wisconsin; 272 deaths
The number of people testing positive for the coronavirus in Wisconsin is nearing 6,000. Wisconsin health officials reported Sunday the number of people in the state testing positive for COVID-19 has grown to 5,911, up 224 from the day before. The number of deaths attributed to the coronavirus in Wisconsin grew Sunday to 272. That’s up six from the previous day. Statewide, 59,235 tests have come back negative. Hospitalizations increased to 1,397, up from 1,376 on Saturday. Officials said 24% of people who have tested positive for coronavirus in Wisconsin have been hospitalized.
April 25, 2020
Wisconsin reports largest 1-day increase of COVID-19 cases
Wisconsin health officials report that 331 tests for the coronavirus have come back positive in the last 24 hours, the largest single-day rise since the outbreak started.
An additional four people have died. The update raises the total number of positive cases to 5,687 and the statewide deaths to 266.
State Department of Health Services data shows that 24 percent of infected people have been hospitalized.
The actual number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
Evers’ stay-at-home extension draws anger, pleas for help
Wisconsin residents bombarded Gov. Tony Evers’ office in the hours surrounding his decision to extend the state’s stay-at-home order with hundreds of emails blasting him for destroying the state’s economy and begging him to let their business remain open, records The Associated Press obtained show. Evers’ website received about 6,435 messages between the morning of April 16 and 5 p.m. on April 17, the day Evers extended stay-at-home to May 26. A majority of senders opposed the order. Some called the extension “political suicide” for the governor.
April 24, 2020
Wisconsin Supreme Court rejects prisoner release request
The Wisconsin Supreme Court has rejected a lawsuit seeking the release of inmates from state prisons as a way to reduce the risk of them contracting the coronavirus. The court on Friday declined to take up a lawsuit filed earlier this month by the American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin on behalf of two inmates with preexisting conditions. The court, in an unsigned order, noted steps taken by the state Department of Corrections to mitigate risks to inmates. The court said it was not within its powers to assign someone to determine which inmates should be released, as the lawsuit sought.
As hundreds protest Wisconsin restrictions, some in GOP skip
The latest demonstration by right-wing groups against measures to contain the coronavirus has arrived in Wisconsin. Hundreds of protesters rallied outside the Statehouse on Friday in one of the largest such events in recent days. But as with some earlier events, one group was noticeably absent: the state’s most prominent Republicans. That includes Sen. Ron Johnson, a Trump ally, who says he is sheltering in place at his home. Johnson’s distance and ambivalence is shared by many Republicans as they warily watch the protests. Six months from an election, the demonstrations are forcing some Republicans to reckon with a restless right flank advocating an unpopular opinion.
Wisconsin chamber of commerce calls for opening businesses
Wisconsin’s chamber of commerce is calling for opening businesses starting May 4. That’s three weeks sooner than is called for under Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ stay-at-home order designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce released its plan Friday. It came hours before protesters were expected to converge on the Capitol to call for reopening the state. Evers’ current order closing most nonessential businesses runs until May 26. Republicans are asking the state Supreme Court to block it and force the Department of Health Services to propose a new rule.
April 23, 2020
Wisconsin labs nearing testing capacity needed to reopen
Wisconsin health officials say labs in the state are closing in on Gov. Tony Evers’ coronavirus testing goal. Evers’ plan to reopen businesses hinges on being able to test at least 85,000 people a week. That equates to about 12,140 tests a day. State Department of Health Services Secretary Andrea Palm said during a video conference Thursday that 48 labs are now testing and the daily capacity stands at 10,937 tests. State health officials say they’re now telling physicians to order tests for anyone who presents with symptoms of the coronavirus.
Wisconsin health officials announce 5,052 positive COVID-19 cases, with 257 deaths
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced 5,052 positive COVID-19 cases and 257 deaths from COVID-19 complications. There are 1,318 COVID-19-related hospitalizations and 51,456 negative tests.
Democrats expect ‘in-person convention,’ party chairman says
Democratic Party chairman Tom Perez says he expects to hold an in-person convention in Milwaukee to nominate Joe Biden for president, though he didn’t rule out the potential that portions of the event would be conducted virtually. The convention is slated for the week of Aug. 17. It was postponed from July 13-16 amid the coronavirus pandemic. Perez told reporters on a telephone call Thursday that they are planning for an in-person convention, but “at the same time, we do not put our public health heads in the sand.” Biden has been more circumspect, stating that the convention might have to be entirely virtual.
April 22, 2020
Wisconsin health officials announce 4,845 positive COVID-19 cases, with 246 deaths
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced 4,845 positive COVID-19 cases and 246 deaths from COVID-19 complications. There are 1,302 COVID-19-related hospitalizations and 49,502 negative tests.
Wisconsin virus order protesters vow to rally without permit
Organizers of a rally against Wisconsin’s stay-at-home order say they’re proceeding with the event on April 24 even though their permit to hold it on the grounds of the state Capitol has been denied. The decision to proceed without a permit comes as two county sheriffs have voiced opposition to the stay-at-home order, Republicans are trying to block it in court and other local governments are charting their own course forward. The planned rally is the latest in a string of events in Wisconsin and elsewhere organized by opponents of orders designed to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
April 21, 2020
Pence visits Wisconsin, thanks GE for ventilators
Vice President Mike Pence highlighted the manufacturing of ventilators during a visit to battleground Wisconsin on Tuesday, a trip that Democrats used to blame the Trump administration for failing to deliver needed supplies to the state to fight the coronavirus.
Pence toured a GE Healthcare plant in Madison which has doubled its production of ventilators over the past month. GE said it plans to double production again by the end of June.
Pence used the opportunity to underscore the availability of ventilators across the country, despite complaints to the contrary. He also thanked GE workers for stepping up, working long hours and saving lives.
Wisconsin Republicans sue governor over stay-at-home order
Republicans who control the Wisconsin Legislature have asked the state Supreme Court to block an extension of the Democratic governor’s stay-at-home order. The lawsuit came Tuesday as Vice President Mike Pence toured a GE Healthcare facility in Madison that is manufacturing ventilators. Pence says social distancing and other mitigation efforts are working to slow the spread of the virus. The lawsuit was expected after Gov. Tony Evers’ health secretary last week ordered nonessential businesses to remain closed until May 26. The original stay-at-home order had been scheduled to end on Friday.
Officials link 7 Wisconsin virus cases to in-person voting
Milwaukee’s health commissioner says officials have identified seven people who may have contracted the coronavirus through activities related to the April 7 election in Wisconsin. Commissioner Jeanette Kowalik says six of the cases involve Milwaukee voters and one is a Milwaukee poll worker. The Journal Sentinel reports Kowalik said Monday officials hope to have additional information on the cases by the end of the week. Wisconsin Department of Health Services Secretary Andrea Palm said Monday there were no signs yet of a surge in cases from the election as some feared. Milwaukee voters stood in long lines, many for hours, to cast their ballots.
April 20, 2020
Supreme Court to hear arguments in challenge to veto powers
The state Supreme Court is set to hear oral arguments in a pair of lawsuits seeking to rein in the governor’s partial veto authority. The cases could impact how much power the governor has to unilaterally alter final spending figures in state budgets. In the first case, three taxpayers are looking to overturn four of Gov. Tony Evers’ partial vetoes in the 2019-21 state budget. They argue Evers illegally created new laws the Legislature never intended. In the other case, Wisconsin Small Business United is challenging former Gov. Scott Walker vetoes in the 2017-19 budget that changed dates.
Wisconsin Tavern League calls for opening bars by May 1
The Tavern League of Wisconsin is calling on Gov. Tony Evers to allow bars and restaurants to reopen on May 1, more than three weeks ahead of the end of the current stay-at-home order that has forced the closure of most nonessential businesses. The lobbying group argued in a statement late Sunday that bars, restaurants and supper clubs could reopen by implementing a variety of safety measures to protect against the spread of COVID-19. The governor is facing increasing pressure from businesses and Republican lawmakers to reduce the time of the stay-at-home-order which he extended last week from April 24 to May 26.
COVID-19 survivor urges people to stop complaining over extended stay-at-home order
A Wisconsin woman who nearly lost her ability to walk after suffering from COVID-19 is imploring people to stop complaining and follow social distancing orders.
35-year-old Leah Blomberg was bedridden just a few weeks ago as she fought off the COVID-19 virus.
Blomberg said she had no underlying health issues but her condition got so bad that she had to be placed on a ventilator and learn how to walk again due to muscle atrophy.
Now back at home, Blomberg said she disagrees with those who are complaining about Gov. Evers’ decision to extend the state’s stay-at-home order through May 26.
In a strongly worded Facebook post that’s been shared dozens of times, Blomberg told people to be thankful for their health.
“The people complaining, haven’t lost anyone or don’t know anyone close to them that’s been through this,” Blomberg said.
April 19, 2020
Wisconsin has a total of 4,346 positive COVID-19 cases and 220 deaths.
April 18, 2020
2 teams investigate Wisconsin virus cases, others protest
There was new testing and protesting in Wisconsin Saturday as the number of COVID-19 cases in the state rose to nearly 4,200 and the death toll increased to 212. Hundreds of protesters stood shoulder-to-shoulder in Brookfield to protest Gov. Tony Evers’ decision to extend Wisconsin’s stay-at-home order through May 26. The group is calling for the reopening of churches, parks and the state economy. Meanwhile, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was in the Green Bay area investigating a recent surge of virus cases
Federal investigators looking into Brown County virus surge
Brown County officials say federal investigators plan to be in the Green Bay area this weekend to look into a recent upsurge in COVID-19 cases. County officials requested help from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention after the number of cases increased more than fourfold in just 10 days. The Green Bay Press Gazette reports that officials are worried that the coronavirus is being transported to nearby counties by people who come into Brown County to work or conduct business, then return home.
April 17, 2020
Wisconsin’s bipartisan detente in fighting coronavirus ends
Wisconsin has a total of 4,045 positive COVID-19 cases and 205 deaths.
Wisconsin’s tenuous bipartisan detente in fighting the coronavirus pandemic broke down this week with Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ decision to extend a stay-at-home order through Memorial Day.
That divide will likely result in lawsuits that may determine who has the power to say when the state can start to reopen.
Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said Friday on WISN-AM that his goal was to have a legal strategy in place for next week.
Other Republicans are calling for Evers’ health secretary to be fired and for limits to be placed on powers of the state health department.
April 16, 2020
Wisconsin joins Midwest partnership to coordinate reopening of economies
Wisconsin has a total of 3,875 positive COVID-19 cases and 197 deaths.
Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, Indiana Gov. Mike Holcomb, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Kentucky Gov. Andy Bashear are joining together to coordinate the reopening of the regional economy.
In a joint statement, the governors said, “We are doing everything we can to protect the people of our states and slow the spread of COVID-19, and we are eager to work together to mitigate the economic crisis this virus has caused in our region. Here in the Midwest, we are bound by our commitment to our people and the community. We recognize that our economies are all reliant on each other, and we must work together to safely reopen them so hardworking people can get back to work and businesses can get back on their feet.”
The statement said there will be four key factors in determining when to reopen:
-Sustained control of the rate of new infections and hospitalizations.
-Enhanced ability to test and trace.
-Sufficient health care capacity to handle resurgence.
-Best practices for social distancing in the workplace.
Gov. Evers extends Wisconsin’s ‘stay-at-home’ order
Gov. Tony Evers extended Wisconsin’s stay-at-home order through May 26 to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Schools will remain closed for the remainder of the academic year. The latest order does allow golf courses to open and for nonessential businesses to make deliveries and have curbside pickup available.
Cudahy meat processing plant to close due to COVID-19 crisis
Smithfield Foods will temporarily close its meat processing plant in Cudahy, Wisconsin because of the coronavirus pandemic. The plant near Milwaukee will be closed for two weeks. Virginia-based Smithfield Foods has reported 518 infections in employees in Sioux Falls and 126 more in people connected to them. Smithfield said a small number of employees at the Wisconsin plant have tested positive for the virus.
University of Wisconsin System moves toward temporary layoffs as COVID-19 revenue losses pile up
The University of Wisconsin System regents are set to take the first steps toward furloughing employees as the coronavirus pandemic stretches on. The regents’ executive committee is set to meet to adjust personnel policies to allow system President Ray Cross and UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank to create furlough policies. System officials estimated that they’ll lose $170 million for the spring semester alone through refunds for on-campus parking, dining and housing serves, technology purchases to move classes online, payments to student workers who have lost their jobs and athletic revenue losses.
April 15, 2020
Wisconsin’s COVID-19 death toll nears 200
Wisconsin has a total of 3,721 positive COVID-19 cases and 182 deaths.
April 14, 2020
Coronavirus cases top 3.5K in Wisconsin
Wisconsin has a total of 3,555 positive coronavirus cases and 170 deaths.
April 13, 2020
Wisconsin’s COVID-19 death toll climbs above 140
Wisconsin has a total of 3,341 positive coronavirus cases and 144 deaths.
April 10, 2020
Coronavirus cases surpass 3K in Wisconsin
According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website, the state has a total of 3,068 positive coronavirus cases and 128 deaths. The website also stated that 904 of their cases were currently hospitalized at a 29% rate.
April 9, 2020
Wisconsin’s COVID-19 cases near 3K, with 111 deaths
The number of coronavirus cases in Wisconsin has reached 2,885, with 111 deaths, state health officials announced Thursday.
Gov. Evers orders 40 state parks, recreational areas to close to limit COVID-19 spread
Gov. Tony Evers has ordered the closure 40 Wisconsin’s state parks, forests and recreational areas primarily in south and southeast Wisconsin starting due to overcrowding, litter, vandalism and to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
He warned Thursday that more closures may be coming if the public does not follow social distancing guidelines and vandalism continues.
April 8, 2020
Wisconsin’s COVID-19 death toll nears 100
Wisconsin health officials have announced 2,756 positive COVID-19 cases, with 99 total deaths.
April 6, 2020
Wisconsin high court overturns Gov. Evers’ order to postpone primary
Wisconsin’s conservative Supreme Court has ruled that Democratic Gov. Tony Evers could not postpone the state’s presidential primary, striking down his order to move the election to June over coronavirus outbreak fears.
Monday morning, Evers issued an executive order in an attempt to delay the state’s scheduled presidential primary election for two months because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The court ruled 4-2 that Evers lacked the authority to move the election on his own.
The decision means the election will occur as originally scheduled on Tuesday.
Wisconsin’s coronavirus cases rise to 2,440, with 77 deaths
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services website shows 173 new coronavirus cases with 9 additional deaths. The latest numbers bring the total number up to 2,440 positive COVID-19 case with 77 deaths in the state.
Gov. Evers issues order to postpone presidential primary
Gov. Tony Evers has issued an executive order to delay the state’s scheduled Tuesday presidential primary election for two months because of the coronavirus pandemic.
April 5, 2020
Wisconsin’s COVID-19 death toll nears 70
The state of Wisconsin has 2,267 positive COVID-19 cases, with 68 deaths, health officials said.
April 4, 2020
Presidential primary to be held as scheduled despite COVID-19 concerns, Republicans say
Wisconsin’s primary election will continue as planned despite concerns about the public health risks of the coronavirus crisis.
Gov. Evers’ called a special session Saturday and asked Republicans to shift the election to all-mail with absentee voting into late May. Republicans said they wouldn’t do it, and immediately adjourned upon meeting.
Wisconsin Republicans have also asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block extended absentee voting in Tuesday’s primary. They argued in a filing Saturday that the extension by a federal judge this week is inherently unfair by creating two different deadlines for in-person and absentee voters.
Coronavirus cases surpass 2K in Wisconsin
The state of Wisconsin has 2,112 positive COVID-19 cases, with 56 deaths, health officials said.
April 3, 2020
Wisconsin health officials said the state has 1,916 positive COID-19 cases, with 37 deaths.
April 1, 2020
Wisconsin officials announced 1,550 COVID-19 cases, with 24 deaths in the state.
Vermont senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders called for Wisconsin to delay its April 7 primary.
“People should not be forced to put their lives on the line to vote, which is why 15 states are now following the advice of public health experts and delaying their elections. We urge Wisconsin to join them,” Sanders said. “The state should delay Tuesday’s vote, extend early voting and work to move entirely to vote-by-mail. While we wait for a decision, we urge our supporters to vote-by-mail.”
March 31, 2020
Wisconsin officials announce 1,351 COVID-19 cases statewide and 16 deaths.
March 30, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ daily outbreak tracker shows 1,221 cases statewide and 14 deaths related to COVID-19.
The coronavirus has delivered a severe blow to Wisconsin dairy farmers who rely on selling milk to restaurants, schools and the hospitality industry.
The Journal Sentinel reports about one-third of Wisconsin dairy products, mainly cheese, are sold in the food service trade.
Farmers say the coronavirus outbreak has caused milk prices to drop to unprofitable levels this spring, at a time when money is needed for the upcoming planting season.
Dairy farmers are worried about processing plants closing or cutting production, forcing them to dump milk.
Preparations for Wisconsin’s presidential primary and spring election that’s just a week away on April 7 continue, even in the face of a growing number of COVID-19 cases statewide and lawsuits seeking a delay and other changes to how the election is run.
Monday was the deadline for voters to register to vote absentee. Once registered, they had until Thursday to request an absentee ballot.
There remains a pending lawsuit in federal court that seeks to postpone the election, move to a mail-in voting only and make a number of other changes to facilitate more ballots being cast.
March 29, 2020
The health department announced a total of 989 confirmed coronavirus cases in the state, with 13 deaths.
March 27, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ daily outbreak tracker shows 842 cases statewide and 13 deaths related to COVID-19.
March 24, 2020
Gov. Tony Evers issued an order Tuesday closing businesses deemed to be nonessential, ordered no gatherings of any size and placed restrictions on travel across Wisconsin for a month in an attempt to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Evers’ order has numerous exceptions, including for hospitals and other health care facilities, grocery stores, bars and restaurants offering delivery and carry out food, airports and other businesses offering essential services.
The order takes effect at 8 a.m. Wednesday and is to run through April 24, but could be altered, ended or extended.
Evers said he didn’t want to have to issue such an order, but “folks need to start taking this seriously.” The goal of the order, which many other states have also issued, is to slow the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak so doctors and nurses are not overwhelmed with patients.
Under the order, Wisconsin residents will be able to go to the doctor and obtain medicine, leave home to care for family members and obtain necessary food and supplies, including pet food.
Other businesses allowed to remain open include pharmacies, gas stations, banks, laundries and dry cleaners, hardware stores, churches, funeral homes and media outlets.
Organizers of the music festival that draws hundreds of thousands of people to Milwaukee’s lakefront each summer has postponed the event for the first time in its 52-year history.
Summerfest was scheduled to run from June 24 to 29 and June 30 to July 5. But because of the uncertainty over the coronavirus, Milwaukee World Festival has cut the event to nine days across the first three weeks in September.
The new dates are Sept. 3 to 5, Sept. 10 to 12 and Sept. 17 to 19.
Organizers have not yet said whether the main acts already scheduled will be available in September, including Justin Bieber, Chris Stapleton and the Dave Matthews Band.
March 23, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ daily outbreak tracker showed 416 cases statewide and one more death related to COVID-19, bringing that number to five.
March 22, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services announced the fourth COVID-19 death in the state. Health officials did not release any information at this time about the latest death, but the website indicated an additional death in Milwaukee County, where they believe they have community spread cases of the virus. A total of 281 people have been confirmed to have the novel coronavirus.
March 21, 2020
Health officials say younger people, and particularly those who are 18 to 30 years old, aren’t immune to COVID-19.
March 20, 2020
Gov. Evers issues an update to the previous order prohibiting mass gatherings of 10 or more people.
The updated order maintains the ban on gatherings of 10 or more people and indefinite school closures, but includes some important changes and clarifications:
- Treats bars and restaurants are the same. Bars will be able to have carryout sales of alcohol and food, if allowed by local ordinances and state law. This will help ensure thousands of establishments can stay in business during this unprecedented health emergency.
- Media and news organizations can remain open to provide the public with vital information.
- Laundromats may remain open.
- Banks, credit unions, and other financial institutions may remain open if they practice social distancing.
- All parts of the food delivery system – from farms to stores – may remain open.
- Clarifies that cafeterias in healthcare facilities may remain open to serve our healthcare workers.
- Allied health professions, such as acupuncturists, are unaffected by the mass gathering ban.
- All parts of our transportation system can continue to serve our economy.
- Any facility used for in-person absentee voting or as a polling location may remain open for voting, except for sites at long-term care and assisted care facilities.
- Hair salons, day spas, nail salons, barber shops, tattoo parlors, body art establishments, and tanning facilities must close effective 5 pm on Fri., March 20, 2020.
- The employer has instructed the claimant to return to work after the employee no longer exhibits symptoms, after a set amount of time to see if the disease is present, or after the quarantine is over.
- The employer has not provided clear instructions for the claimant to return to work.
- The claimant would be available for other work with another employer but for perceived COVID-19 symptoms preventing a return to work or the quarantine.
- are critically ill and receiving ICU level care with unexplained viral pneumonia or respiratory failure.
- are hospitalized (non-ICU) with fever or signs and symptoms of lower respiratory tract illness (cough, shortness of breath) and either known exposure to a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patient or travel to an area with sustained community transmission.
- are hospitalized (non-ICU) with unexplained fever and signs/symptoms of lower respiratory tract illness.
- are health are workers with unexplained fever and signs/symptoms of a lower-respiratory illness, regardless of hospitalization.
- Person-to-person: The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person between people who are in close contact with one another (about 6 feet) via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Those droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Spread from contact with infected surfaces or objects: It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
- When does spread happen? People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest). Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
- How efficiently does the virus spread? How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (like measles), while other viruses are less so. Another factor is whether the spread continues over multiple generations of people (if spread is sustained). The virus that causes COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in Hubei province and other parts of China. In the United States, spread from person-to-person has occurred only among a few close contacts and has not spread any further to date.
- There is still more to be learned: COVID-19 is an emerging disease and there is more to learn about its transmissibility, severity, and other features and what will happen in the United States. New information will further inform the risk assessment.
- Shortness of breath
The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner said Friday it was investigating the death of a 66-year-old man who died from complications of a COVID-19 infection. This marks the third death from COVID-19 in the state.
Gov. Evers’ call for the Republican-controlled Legislature to waive a one-week waiting period to receive unemployment benefits in the face of soaring claims will be an early test of how well the two sides can work together in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
March 18, 2020
Gov. Evers order child care settings not to operate with more than 10 staff present at a time and many not operate with more than 50 children present at a time. The order is effective at 8:00 a.m. Thursday, March 19, 2020 and will remain in effect for the duration of the public health emergency or until a superseding order is issued.
The governor also order the Department o Workforce Development (DWD) to consider a claimant to be available for suitable work during a public health emergency if the claimant is perceived by an employer as exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms preventing a return to work or the claiment is quarantined by a medical professional or under local, state or federal government direction or guidance, and one of the following applies:
This order goes into effect immediately and remains in effect for the duration of the public health emergency.
March 17, 2020
DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm signed an order for a statewide moratorium on mass gatherings of 10 or more people, as directed by Gov. Evers. The order makes exemptions for transportation, educational institutions, child care, hotels, military, law enforcement, food pantries, hospitals, long-term care facilities, grocery and convenient stores, utility facilities, job centers, and courts..
Bars and restaurants can only offer take-out or delivery.
Additionally, schools will be closed for the duration of the public health emergency.
The state also released that they have prioritize testing for COVID-19 because of a shortage of ingredients needed to run the tests, but added that they have evidence of community spread within Wisconsin.
Tier One (Individuals who):
Tier Two (Individual who):
Tests that do not meet these criteria will be sent to other labs in the state and country for testing, resulting in longer wait times.
March 16, 2020
Kenosha County reports its first confirmed case of COVID-19. The infected person is a 59-year-old female with no travel history. The individual is in self-isolation at home.
Governor Tony Evers directed DHS to prohibit mas gatherings of 50 people or more statewide effective March 17, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. and will remain in effect for the duration of the public health emergency declaration or until a superseding order is issued.
Twenty-nine Wisconsin residents who were aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship that docked at the Port of Oakland in California last week were safely transported back to Wisconsin late Sunday night, where Soldiers and Airmen from the Wisconsin National Guard were waiting to transport them back to their homes for self-quarantine. Two passengers chose to remain in quarantine in Texas under the custody of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HSS), citing personal reasons. State officials continue to work with HHS to return home the seven Wisconsin passengers who remain in HHS custody in California.
March 12, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) and Public Health Madison & Dane County announced two additional people have contracted COVID-19. Both had contact with the confirmed case reported earlier this week. Both patients are isolated at home.
Gov. Evers declared a Public Health Emergency due to COVID-19. He also announced the state has 37 residents returning to Wisconsin from the Princess Cruise Ship who may have been exposed and need to be in monitored self quarantine for 14 days.
March 11, 2020
Three cases of the novel coronavirus was confirmed in Fond du Lac and Waukesha counties, bringing the total in the state to six cases. The Waukesha County patient was exposed while traveling in the United States and internationally, and is currently isolated at home. Both Fond du Lac County patients were exposed while traveling, one in the U.S. and one internationally. One patient is hospitalized, while the other person is isolated at home. County health officials are working to determine the people who have been in contact with the patients to isolate or quarantine people and test those who are exhibiting symptoms.
March 10, 2020
A third case of COVID-19 was confirmed by the Wisconsin Department of Health services and Public Health Madison and Dane County. The person was exposed while traveling in the United States and is currently isolated at home. County health officials are working to determine the people who have been in contact with the patient to isolate or quarantine people and test those who are exhibiting symptoms.
March 9, 2020
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) and the Pierce County Public Health Department announced today that a second person has tested positive for COVID-19. The person was exposed while traveling within the U.S. and is currently isolated at home. County health officials are working to determine the people who have been in contact with the patient to isolate or quarantine people and test those who are exhibiting symptoms.
February 5, 2020
The first 2019 novel coronavirus case was confirmed in Wisconsin. The patient is an adult with a history of travel to Beijing, China prior to becoming ill and was exposed to known cases while in China. The individual is isolated at home, and is doing well.
Wisconsin cases by county:
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has identified a total of 5,052 coronavirus cases, directing the DHS to use all the resources necessary to respond to and contain the outbreak.
Adams County:4 cases, 1 death
Ashland County:2 cases
Barron County:6 cases
Bayfield County:3 cases, 1 death
Brown County:720 cases, 2 deaths
Buffalo County:4 cases, 1 death
Calumet County:7 cases
Chippewa County:20 cases
Clark County: 19 cases, 1 death
Columbia County:27 cases, 1 death
Crawford County:3 cases
Dane County:401 cases, 21 deaths
Dodge County:23 cases, 1 death
Door County:10 cases, 1 death
Douglas County:9 cases
Dunn County:9 cases
Eau Claire County:24 cases
Florence County:2 cases
Fond du Lac County:67 cases, 3 deaths
Grant County:28 cases, 3 deaths
Green County:11 cases
Green Lake County:1 case
Iowa County: 7 cases
Iron County:2 cases, 1 death
Jackson County:12 cases, 1 death
Jefferson County:39 cases
Juneau County:12 cases, 1 death
Kenosha County:329 cases, 7 deaths
Kewaunee County:10 cases, 1 death
La Crosse County:26 cases
Lafayette County:4 cases
Manitowoc County:9 cases
Marathon County:18 cases, 1 death
Marinette County:7 cases, 1 death
Marquette County:3 cases, 1 death
Menominee County:1 case
Milwaukee County:2,525 cases, 157 deaths
Monroe County:14 cases
Oconto County:6 cases
Oneida County:6 cases
Outagamie County:43 cases, 2 deaths
Ozaukee County:82 cases, 9 deaths
Pierce County:8 cases
Polk County:4 cases
Portage County:4 cases
Price County:1 case
Racine County:255 cases, 10 deaths
Richland County:10 cases, 1 death
Rock County:151 cases, 4 deaths
Rusk County:4 cases
Sauk County:38 cases, 3 deaths
Sawyer County:2 cases
Shawano County:8 cases
Sheboygan County:44 cases, 2 deaths
St. Croix County:13 cases
Trempealeau County:2 case
Vernon County: 1 case
Vilas County:4 cases
Walworth County:132 cases, 8 deaths
Washburn County:1 case
Washington County:92 cases, 4 deaths
Waukesha County:299 cases, 14 deaths
Waupaca County:7 cases, 1 death
Waushara County:2 cases
Winnebago County:48 cases, 1 death
Wood County:2 cases
The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is tracking all new coronavirus cases on their website.
HOW IT SPREADS
* The CDC believes at this time that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure. This is based on what has been seen previously as the incubation period of MERS-CoV viruses.
RELATED STORIES AND RESOURCES:
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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Source: ABC7 Chicago