COVID-19 hospitalizations hit 2021 high in Wisconsin

The number of people hospitalized for COVID-19 in Wisconsin is at the highest level of 2021.

The state reported 1,223 hospitalizations Nov. 18, mirroring figures seen during last winter's surge, state data shows. The current tally is a little over half of Wisconsin's all-time hospitalization record, which hit 2,277 on Nov. 17, 2020.

"We're seeing daily numbers that we haven't seen since the end of 2020 and numbers that are higher than we saw at any time during September and October, which was the initial wave of infection caused by the delta variant in the United States," Ryan Westergaard, MD, PhD, state epidemiologist for communicable diseases, said during a Nov. 17 media briefing. "Many of our hospitals are operating at their full capacity or will be at their capacity in the near future."

Of the 1,223 people currently hospitalized with confirmed COVID-19 cases, 327 were in intensive care and 595 were on ventilators, according to state data.

The hospitalization record comes as cases continue to rise in the state. As of Nov. 18, the state's seven-day case average was 2,963, up from 1,843 cases just three and a half weeks ago, Dr. Westergaard said. 


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