Wood County Enters Crisis Mode, Highest COVID-19 Case Rate of 2021

WISCONSIN RAPIDS, WI (Submitted to OnFocus) – As of November 18, 2021, Wood County has 568 active cases of COVID-19 and a 7-day average of 66 cases of COVID-19 per day. This rate is higher than any point during 2021. The Wood County Health Department no longer has the capacity to follow-up with everyone who is positive with COVID-19 and their close contacts. The Department moved to a crisis model for notifying positive cases and contact tracing efforts starting Friday, November 19, 2021.

Due to limited capacity, some individuals will be offered an online interview option. This option will be sent via a text message link and include a disease investigator’s contact information should you have questions or concerns. We will not ask for bank accounts, insurance information or social security numbers. If you feel something is suspicious, please contact us at 715-421-8911.

While the Health Department will attempt to follow-up with individuals who test positive, review isolation recommendations, and determine close contacts, the response may be delayed more than 24 hours. If you have tested positive for COVID-19 please stay home and isolate (separate from others) immediately for a minimum of 10 days from the start of your symptoms or the date you were tested if you have no symptoms.

If you or a loved one are exposed to someone with COVID-19 you should quarantine (separate from others). Exposure includes being within 6 feet of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 for at least a total of 15 minutes cumulative within a 24-hour period or have had physical touch with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Per Wisconsin Department of Health Services, 14 days is safest (and may be required in some situations) for unvaccinated individuals. This time may be lessened to 10 days (with no test if you have not developed any symptoms) or a minimum of 7 days (if a negative test is collected on day 5 or later) for those who remain without symptoms. Individuals who are released early from quarantine must be able to maintain 6 feet of physical distance from others and must wear a mask for the full 14 day quarantine period.

Fully vaccinated individuals do not need to quarantine unless they develop symptoms. It is recommended to continue to monitor for symptoms for 14 days after last contact, wear a mask indoors, and get tested 5-7 days after exposure. For more information on quarantine timelines click How Long Should I Quarantine a resource provided by Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

We welcome your stories! Contact us at [email protected]!

David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]