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Today we highlight a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel story voicing frustrations from public health officials as Wisconsinites continue to shrug off calls to physically distance, wear a mask and take other steps to avoid infecting their neighbors with COVID-19.
“Now, many people — particularly those who are younger or without medical conditions that make them more susceptible to severe complications — expect to experience only mild symptoms if they become infected,” Guy Boulton reports. “The result has been a certain amount of acceptance, even fatalism, about the pandemic — and that, too, has made it harder to change people’s behavior.”
Also muddling public health messaging, as Wisconsin Watch has reported: Wisconsin’s polarized politics and rampant misinformation spreading on social media.
The Department of Health Services on Friday reported 7,777 additional COVID-19 infections, yet another daily record. DHS also reported 58 new deaths linked to the virus, pushing the state’s pandemic death toll to 2,573.
Just 11% of the state’s intensive care beds were unfilled Friday, according to the Wisconsin Hospital Association.
‘People in the community don’t seem to care’: Wisconsin hospitals’ struggles with COVID surge isn’t getting people to change behavior — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
‘Catastrophic’ lack of hospital beds in Upper Midwest as coronavirus cases surge — The Washington Post
Fox Cities nursing homes demand state leaders come up with plan to control COVID-19 in Wisconsin — Appleton Post-Crescent
Catholic schools head, teachers union president respond to order to close all school buildings in Racine — The Journal Times
Should your child participate in the winter sports season? The data is limited, and mixed. — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
As COVID-19 surge sets records, Gov. Tony Evers says relief package should be completed next week — Wisconsin State Journal
Local hospitals say staffing a concern as COVID-19 surges — Janesville Gazette
Virus surge: Schools abandon classes, states retreat — Associated Press
Labs sound alarm on coronavirus testing capacity, supplies — POLITICO
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Data to note
WisContext offers these visualizations of Wisconsin’s startling trends in COVID-19 infections, deaths and hospitalizations.
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Outdoor learning space starts to take shape at Baraboo elementary school — Baraboo News Republic
Gov. Evers Announces “Hope” Theme for 2020 Student Crafted Holiday Ornaments — Office of Gov. Tony Evers
The nonprofit Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism (wisconsinwatch.org) collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, PBS Wisconsin, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the Center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.