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Credit: Claire DeRosa / Wisconsin Watch

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As life begins to return to normal for many Wisconsinites, negative effects of the pandemic linger. Health care workers who witnessed thousands of their fellow residents suffer and die from COVID-19 are now struggling with the trauma of that experience, writes Madeline Heim of the Appleton Post-Crescent. And seniors who stayed home for months to avoid catching the virus are now at increased risk of falls due to inactivity. A U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention program in Wisconsin works to help older people regain their strength and balance.

Top stories

Residents across Wisconsin shared messages of support and hope for health care workers during the early days of the pandemic. Credit: Reader Submitted Photos

We called them heroes. How will we support Wisconsin’s health care workers as they grapple with the trauma of COVID? — Appleton Post-Crescent

For older adults, isolation and inactivity from pandemic ‘a recipe for falls’ — WPR

Most Wisconsin county, city mask requirements nonexistent or expiring — Wisconsin State Journal

As CDC, DHS loosen requirements, Wisconsin schools reassess mask mandates — WPR

24% of Dane County 12- to 15-year-olds have one COVID-19 shot a week after becoming eligible — Wisconsin State Journal

Some uneasy about kids’ health as Dane County announces end date for mask mandate — WKOW

How being Hmong spurred this Wausau-area pharmacist to lead a COVID-19 vaccination effort — Wausau Daily Herald

Madison sports teams plan for increased attendance capacities after distancing order expires — Wisconsin State Journal

No Memorial Day parade in Beloit, South Beloit — Beloit Daily News

The vaccination campaign that came before COVID-19 — WXPR

How will we remember 2020? Here’s what Wisconsin curators and historians say — WPR

Quotable

“I’ve given so much to everybody else. You lose interest in the things that bring you pleasure, things that make you happy.”

Sheboygan Memorial Medical Center speech-language pathologist Lindsay Morgan describing the psychological toll of caring for patients with COVID-19

Data to note

Click on the image above to see Wisconsin DHS COVID-19 vaccine data, which is updated daily.

Here’s a look at the Department of Health Services’ vaccine dashboard, which showed Wednesday that 45.7% of Wisconsinites have received at least one vaccine dose, including 82.4% of those ages 65 and older. Meanwhile, 39.8% of Wisconsinites are fully vaccinated, including 77.9% of those older than 65. Racial disparities persist in distributing vaccines. The shares of Black, Hispanic and Native American residents to receive a dose remain below that of white residents.

On Wednesday, the state DHS reported a seven-day average of 394 new daily infections, part of a long-term downward trend in new cases. The state also reported five new COVID-19 deaths, bringing the full toll to 6,976. 

According to the Prison Policy Initiative, Wisconsin is in the middle of the pack when it comes to states vaccinating people incarcerated in state and federal prisons. 

Find a vaccine site near you

DHS and the federal government have partnered with Vaccine Finder to help Wisconsinites find vaccinations. Vaccinations are often by appointment, but providers are increasingly offering walk-in options. In addition, people seeking COVID-19 shots can text their ZIP code to 438829 to find nearby vaccine providers.  

COVID-19 fact-checking

Not sure if something you heard about COVID-19 is true? FactCheck.org offers this page full of explainers — and debunking of common distortions — about the disease to help you sort out fact from fiction. 

Resilient Wisconsin

People helping others and showing resilience during this time of anxiety. Send suggestions by tagging us on social media — @wisconsinwatch — or emailing us: tips@wisconsinwatch.org

Boys and Girls Clubs hope to highlight youth voices through COVID-19 PSA competition — Cap Times 

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The byline "Wisconsin Watch" represents members of the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism's editorial and public engagement and marketing staff.