November 30, 2020

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Why Wisconsin is in ‘crisis mode’ amid surging coronavirus cases

Dr. Paul Casey, emergency department medical director at Bellin Hospital in Green Bay, Wisconsin, told...

Dr. Paul Casey, emergency department medical director at Bellin Hospital in Green Bay, Wisconsin, told CNBC that his state was in “crisis mode” as one in three Badger State residents has the coronavirus. 

“All hospitals across the state are either at or nearing capacity,” Casey told “The News with Shepard Smith.” “Today we had a record number of Covid-19 cases, 7,500, and two weeks ago it was half of that, and this is straining us almost to capacity.”

According to the Wisconsin Department of Health, there are 293,388 confirmed cases in the state with 43,001 cases in just the past seven days. That is up 9,135 compared to the previous week. Casey warned that given the country’s current trajectory, Americans could see similar scenes playing out in Italy. Cotugno hospital in Naples struggled to find beds to deal with rising coronavirus infections and administered oxygen to patients while they were waiting in their cars.

A record number of Americans — 143,000 — tested positive on Wednesday with the coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University data. It was the ninth straight day of more than 100,000 new cases. A record 65,368 victims were hospitalized, and more than 12,500 people are in intensive care, according to the Covid Tracking Project. On Wednesday, the virus killed more than 2,000 people, the most since May, JHU data showed. New predictions from the CDC show that the U.S. could add 40,000 more Covid-19 deaths by Dec. 5. 

Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health, told host Shepard Smith that the key to breaking the cycle of transmission was widespread testing. 

“My take is there should be no debate — widespread testing is critical to controlling this virus, but that’s not the White House’s view on this,” Jha said.

Jha added that while the nation’s testing capacity has increased, it isn’t fast enough to keep up with the surge of new Covid cases. According to the Covid Tracking Project, the average tests per day have topped 1.4 million, which is up 80% from two months ago. 

Casey advised communities across the country to follow the advice everyone has been hearing for months. 

“The most important thing is realizing that we all have to take an active part in stemming this pandemic,” Casey said.  “Wear a mask, socially distance, wash your hands — all these things are extremely important right now.”



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