Dane County COVID-19 community level moves to “high”

MADISON, Wis. — Dane County’s COVID-19 community level is now “high,” Public Health Madison and Dane County said Friday.

That means that residents are encouraged to wear a mask indoors and get up to date on their vaccinations.

“Cases reported to us have remained stable over the last two months, but hospitalizations in our region have seen a gradual increase,” PHMDC director Janel Heinrich said in a statement.

The CDC determines a county’s community level based on new reported cases per 100,000 people, new regional hospital admissions with COVID-19 and percent of regional inpatient beds occupied by COVID-19 patients over the past week.

PHMDC said an average of 64 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 last week. Officials also said that cases are likely underreported due to the accessibility of rapid tests.

“It is possible we could bounce between medium and high levels for a few weeks,” Heinrich said. “Being aware of our local landscape…and taking appropriate actions can help prevent the spread of the virus.”

According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services COVID-19 dashboard, 79.3% of Dane County residents have received a full vaccine series, but only 49.6% of Dane County residents have received a booster dose.