Data Notes for the Week of June 29
Community Test Site Remains Very Busy
The community test site at Alliant Energy Center has been the busiest it has ever been. From June 22 through June 27, 10,872 people were tested. Since the community test site opened on May 11, 34,110 people have been tested there. The National Guard continues to prioritize accurate data and specimen collection over testing speed, and we appreciate everyone’s patience as they quickly and accurately get people tested.
The day with the highest utilization so far—Thursday, June 25—the National Guard completed 183.3 tests per hour, which averages out to one test every 20 seconds for 12 full hours. The Alliant Energy Center community test site will be open until at least August 31. We are working with other testing partners to open up more community pop-up test sites throughout Dane County to further meet the needs of residents.
“The Wisconsin National Guard members supporting community testing in Dane County have been 100% professional, efficient, precise, and tireless. Wisconsin Soldiers and Airmen supporting Wisconsin communities during an emergency is at the heart of what it means to be a ‘citizen-soldier’ and they have stepped up when we needed them,” said Kenneth Van Horn, Public Health Madison & Dane County Emergency Preparedness Coordinator.
Today we released this week’s data snapshot. If you’re new to the data snapshot, we publish a weekly summary of the status for each of our metrics (you can find past issues on our data and metrics page). We have a few notes for this week’s issue:
We’re continuing to see a large number of cases each day.
The metric for cases per day turned red during this 14-day period. Cases per day ranged from 13 to 115, with an average of 44 cases per day. This metric turned red because we had an average of more than 20 cases per day.
From June 13 through June 26, 614 people tested positive for COVID-19 in Dane County. Here’s what we know about these cases:
- 49% of cases were between the ages of 18 and 25.
- 54% of cases were tested at the community test site at Alliant Energy Center.
- 45% of cases interviewed reported attending a gathering or party with people outside of their household.
- 28% of cases (a total of 172) were associated with a cluster: 132 from bars, 14 from workplaces, 11 from congregate facilities, 3 from daycares/preschools, and 12 from other clusters.
- 13% of cases were asymptomatic at the time of the interview.
The measure for community spread continued to move in the wrong direction.
In last week’s snapshot, the community spread metric turned red, and this week the percentage went up. Currently, 37% of cases who tested positive didn’t know where they could have gotten COVID-19, up from 33% in the last data snapshot. This number needs to be under 20% to be green and between 20 and 30% to be yellow.
As we said last week, younger people tend to have less severe cases of COVID, but people with mild or no symptoms can still spread the virus to others, especially if they are out and about because they don’t feel sick. Last week we put out a new order with stricter requirements in bars. Gathering in bars in particular is a concern because groups of people mix, bars are often loud spaces that require loud talking to communicate (which can spread infectious droplets farther), alcohol impairs the judgment of patrons, and people often aren’t able to identify or provide contact information for the people they were in close contact with.
Public Health orders are one part of a strategy. We also require individual action to help prevent the spread of disease. We especially need people to stay home when they’re sick or feel off, wear a mask in public if they’re able, avoid gatherings, and keep their social circles small. We have a number of cases who went to multiple bars with a larger group or attended a house party where they didn’t know the host. When people aren’t able to identify and give us contact information for their contacts, we’re unable to reach them to tell them to isolate and get tested, or it takes us a longer time to track them down and obtain their information, which is more time they might be spending out in the community while they’re infectious.
The measure for COVID-like illness turned green.
This measure was red last week but has now turned green. Keep in mind this measure is more useful when testing isn’t widely available.