EAU CLAIRE, Wis. / WINONA, Minn. (WLAX/WEUX) – Eau Claire County has once again set a new single-day record for confirmed coronavirus cases. 37 new cases on Wednesday bring the county to 1,037 cases total. Of those cases, 859 are considered recovered.
No new deaths are reported today that number in Eau Claire County remains at 6.
In the past seven days, there have been 199 new, positive cases in the county. More than half of those new cases are connected to UW-Eau Claire, between students and faculty.
Eau Claire City-County Health Department Director, Lieske Giese says that a spike in cases in the county was expected when school started back up, but she is surprised with just how many cases there have been lately.
“We weren’t surprised by that. Certainly, the volume was considerably higher than probably all of us thought was going to happen those first few days but we knew that the more we brought people together and the more that we closely monitored symptoms, which is what’s happening at UW-Eau Claire, CVTC, and in the k-12 system; the more symptoms would be identified and the more testing would happen,” said Giese.
Winona State University announced 121 new COVID-19 cases today, bringing the total number of cases to 209. University President Scott Olson issued a 14-day campus quarantine which began Tuesday.
According to Winona State Officials, 60 students have been sent letters warning them of possible sanctions for not wearing masks and not following social distancing protocols.
Olson says it’s critical that the university stem from the spread of the disease and there will be consequences for those who do not follow the student code of conduct.
“We’re trying to take an educational approach which means encouraging good behavior but if students are not following that we do have this ability to issue sanctions and we work with the Winona Police Department and we work with the local landlords for our off-campus housing here in Winona, to help let us know about violations that might be happening someplace other than our own residence halls,” said Olson.
Vice President Enrollment Management & Student Life, Dr. Denise Lloyd Mcdowell said, “We have to appeal on the human will to want to comply so we have been talking to different spheres of influence, asking people to touch each other inside their influence circles and saying we need you to cooperate, we need you to self-quarantine, it’s really important.”
Winona State will host a free COVID-19 testing site next Tuesday and Wednesday, September 15 and 16 from 11 am until 7 pm at the integrated wellness center parking lot. The testing is available to students as well as the greater Winona community.
The latest state numbers out today from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services push the total number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 to more than 83 thousand. Of those, nearly one case in ten remains active.
15 more fatalities have been logged, and the amount of recovered cases remains close to 89 percent.