As post-election drama unfolds, COVID-19 remains real, relentless and increasingly deadly — 11/9/20

A roundup of top news and information about Wisconsin’s response to the coronavirus

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Today we highlight the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s devastating look inside a COVID-19 ward at University Hospital in Madison — where oxygen-deprived patients lie paralyzed due to sedation — as the coronavirus runs rampant across Wisconsin and the country. 

“In recent days, it may have seemed to many Americans that their world had shrunk to the single image of an electoral map. Yet since Election Day dawned, about 5,000 Americans have died from the new coronavirus and half a million have tested positive for it,” Mark Johnson reports. “There has been no letup when it comes to the gravest issue facing the nation. If anything, the intense focus on the election may have worsened the pandemic.”

The Wisconsin Department of Health services has reported 73 new deaths linked to COVID-19 since Friday, bringing the state’s pandemic death toll to 2,329.

Top Stories

John Hart / State Journal

With rare exceptions, COVID-19 patients at UW Hospital can’t have visitors, and workers must change and clean protective gear each time they go from room to room.

Top Stories

While the rest of America focuses on election drama, life for those inside a Wisconsin COVID ward is ‘all-consuming’ Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 

Pfizer’s early data shows vaccine is more than 90% effective The New York Times

Hundreds of health workers across Wisconsin are sidelined by COVID-19 infections, exposure Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 

‘She was our treasure’: A pioneering Milwaukee woman with Down syndrome died alone from COVID-19, devastating her close-knit family Milwaukee Journal Sentinel 

Inside UW Hospital’s growing COVID-19 unit, patient fates are uncertain Wisconsin State Journal 

Hospitals scramble for staff, ICU beds as Wisconsin passes a quarter million COVID-19 cases Cap Times 

Ascension E.R. seeing rise in people sick with COVID return after being sent home The Journal Times 

Sheboygan County remains a COVID-19 hotspot with new record for cases in a week, 32nd death Sheboygan Press

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“It’s been alarming to see in some ways just denial of science, that people say COVID is a hoax or that it’s not real … I can assure you it’s very real. We’ve been taking care of these patients day in and day out for the last eight months and in particular the last couple of weeks.”

— Dr. Hilary Faust of UW Health, as quoted by Channel 3000

“The safest way to think about it is this: Act as if you have COVID-19. Don’t do anything you wouldn’t do if you knew you had COVID, because the reality is that you might have it and not know it, and you can spread it … You could be the reason that your family, your friends, your coworker — really anyone that you interact with — gets sick.”

— Siobhan Allen of the Sauk County Health Department, as quoted by the Baraboo News Republic

Data to note

WisContext offers these visualizations of Wisconsin’s startling trends in COVID-19 infections, deaths and hospitalizations.

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:

Empty Stocking Club volunteers will deliver holiday toys to families in need amid COVID-19 pandemic Wisconsin State Journal 

Kohl’s CEO Gass describes how chain retooled for holiday shopping during global pandemic Milwaukee Business Journal

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