Testing numbers down in Wisconsin, state health officials concerned

NOW: Testing numbers down in Wisconsin, state health officials concerned

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) --With Wisconsin still in the hot seat for high COVID cases, state officials are urging people to go get tested. However, that's the problem. Testing numbers are down.

"Our seven-day average of daily confirmed cases is 3,770 and that is lower than it was a month ago, but our testing numbers are also down,"  Secretary-designee Andrea Palm said.

During the state's media briefing she mentioned that not enough people are getting tested.

“With our positivity rate as high as it is, we know we are not testing enough people to get an accurate picture of the virus here in Wisconsin," Palm said.

State officials say they have a strong network of labs in Wisconsin. The capacity to process tests is almost 60,000 per day. They say their lab capacity is only helpful if people get tested.

“Testing is a key tool to boxing the virus because it informs our decisions," Palm said.

With the recent Thanksgiving travel, many have been wondering why their isn't a surge in COVID cases. 

“We think that’s part of what’s contributing to not seeing an additional spike is that we may not have as many people getting tested as we like to see," Traci DeSalvo said. She is the acting director of the Bureau of Communicable Diseases.

“We really do want to encourage people if you have symptoms of COVID-19, a known exposure to someone who is a confirmed case of COVID-19, we really want to encourage you to talk to your health care provider or go to a community testing site to get tested.”

While testing is at the top of their list, Gov. Evers says he's counting on Wisconsinites to do their part. 

“Staying home, wearing a mask whenever you have to go out, your actions will not only help save lives but will help protect our health care workforce."

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