Wisconsin reaches lowest level of COVID-19 hospitalizations since April 2020
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) – Wisconsin hit a significant pandemic milestone this week with 186 patients hospitalized for COVID-19 statewide on Monday, May 31 -- the lowest the number has been since the data has been tracked.
The Wisconsin Hospital Association (WHA) reported the previous lowest point was 192 in April of 2020, when the WHA began tracking and recording that information. It’s also a sign of progress from the peak of the pandemic in the state when 2,277 people were hospitalized on November 17, 2020.
"That is certainly a milestone worth celebrating as we come out of what has been a challenging 14 months,” Kelly Lietz, VP of communications for the WHA told CBS 58 in an interview.
WHA believed its tracking of information like hospitalizations has made a valuable impact in informing the state throughout the pandemic.
“We decided to lean in early in the pandemic, back in April and share that data with the public, the media, decision makers to help inform our response to what was a growing crisis at that time,” Lietz said.
Milwaukee County is also at its lowest level of COVID hospitalizations since it started keeping track in the early days of the pandemic.
“We know why that decrease is, it’s because of vaccinations,” Dr. Ben Weston with the Medical College of Wisconsin told reporters Tuesday. “It’s because more and more people in our community continue to go out and seek vaccines and protect themselves as well as protect the community.”
Doctors at UW Health in Madison echo the sentiment of the drop in hospitalizations being a sign of success of the vaccines. But they warn the pandemic is far from over. They say they will be monitoring variants of the virus later in the year as well as the duration of the vaccines’ immune response and if a booster shot is needed.
“The fall is typically the season when all respiratory viruses are at their full rates and so I think that would be the case for Sars-CoV2 as well,” Dr. Nasia Safdar of UW Health told CBS 58. “If it doesn’t happen that’ll be great but we are preparing as though it is likely we will see a circulating virus around that time.”
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