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Today we feature a story by WPR’s Shamane Mills, who reports that while many people are returning to work, child care remains scarce — and the industry is in trouble. Mills tells the story of Silke O’Donnell, who closed her Madison day care center after 27 years. “Last year was just so mentally stressful,” O’Donnell said. “I just made the decision that I’m going to quit a couple years early.” Mills reports that thousands of day care centers across the country have closed due to rising costs and falling enrollment during the pandemic, including many in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin’s child care industry faces a tough recovery after COVID-19 — WPR
‘There’s just not a need to keep a facility this big’: Public Health prepares to end testing, vaccines at Alliant Energy Center — Channel3000
New vaccines developed to fight COVID-19 pandemic could break ground in cancer treatment — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
GOP leaders discuss workforce shortage, increased enforcement of work search rules — Wisconsin State Journal
Local colleges receive eight figures in federal COVID aid — Eau Claire Leader Telegram
Wisconsin businesses can’t find workers, citing unemployment benefits — Fox6 News
Heart of Vilas County trails remains popular after pandemic biking boom — WXPR
U.S. nursing home deaths fall sharply as older Americans are vaccinated — The New York Times
Data to Note
Here’s a look at the Department of Health Services’ vaccine dashboard, which showed Thursday that 48.1% of Wisconsinites have received at least one vaccine dose, including 83.4% of those ages 65 and older. Meanwhile, 42.3% of Wisconsinites are fully vaccinated, including 79.3% 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 Thursday, the state DHS reported a seven-day average of 143 new daily infections, continuing a long-term downward trend in new cases. The state also reported 19 new COVID-19 deaths, bringing the full toll to 7,129.
This chart from WisContext shows how infections, deaths and hospitalizations have disproportionately affected people of color in Wisconsin.
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
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.
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