COVID-19 UPDATES FOR COUNTY OFFICIALS

As issues continue to develop and change at a quick rate with COVID-19, the Coronavirus, we at the Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA) are working alongside Governor Tony Evers, the Administration, the National Association of Counties (NACo) and our general counsel, von Briesen & Roper, s.c., (von Briesen) to provide the latest resources and updates to assist county officials during this unprecedented time.

COVID-19 Daily Update: 8.3.2020

August 3, 2020

Key Data Summary Updates for August 3, 2020 (unless otherwise noted)

  • Total negative counts: 911,435 (+6,769)
  • Total positive counts: 55,328 (+404)
  • Total ever hospitalized: 4,732 (+15) (9%)
  • Total deaths: 949 (+1)
  • Active cases: 9,866 (18%)
  • Recovered cases: 44,495 (80%)
  • Percent of confirmed cases by race*: American Indian (1%), Asian or Pacific Islander (3%), Black (15%), White (62%), Multiple or other races (10%), Unknown (9%)
  • Percent of confirmed cases by ethnicity*: Hispanic or Latino (24%), Not Hispanic or Latino (63%), Unknown (12%)

Emergency department visits:

  • Influenza like illness: 42 visits on 8/1, compared to previous 3-day average of 49
  • COVID-19 like illness: 109 visits on 8/1, compared to previous 3-day average of 175
  • Total hospital bed utilization: 78%

*This data, without population context, is not an accurate reflection of disease burden by race and ethnicity. For a more complete picture, one should consider the percentage of cases by race and ethnicity based on the percentage of the whole population represented by each community.

BIPARTISAN COALITION OF COUNTY EXECUTIVES SENDS LETTER TO CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION REQUESTING DIRECT FUNDING IN FOURTH COVID-19 RELIEF PACKAGE
Today a bi-partisan coalition of county executives from around the State of Wisconsin wrote to Wisconsin’s Congressional delegation, asking for additional direct and flexible funding for local governments in the fourth COVID-19 funding package currently under consideration:

“The pandemic has resulted in dramatic increases in the demand for critical services all over our country. Here in Wisconsin, county governments are on the frontlines, running emergency management operations, operating local health departments, administering public testing sites, supporting local hospital operations and nursing homes, and providing public health information to the residents and businesses that call our communities home. 

These urgent and critical services come at a high cost and will place a significant and sustained stress on county budgets. We are providing critical and costly crisis services, and while these service needs continue to grow, our revenue supporting these services are plummeting.”

OP-ED: IF STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS CONTINUE TO STRUGGLE, SO WILL AMERICA
NACo, in an op-ed published on CNN.com, with the National Governors Association, National Conference of State Legislatures, International City/County Management Association, United States Conference of Mayors, National League of Cities and Council of State Governments, calls for direct federal support for state and local governments as we confront the coronoavirus pandemic.

DHS LAUNCHING TEST RESULT HOTLINE FOR NATIONAL GUARD COVID-19 TEST SITES
Beginning Monday, August 3, 2020, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services is launching a COVID-19 Test Result Hotline for individuals tested at National Guard testing sites in Wisconsin.
The purpose of this call center is to:

  • Ensure that people who are tested Wisconsin National Guard are able to access their test results. This may include individuals whose phone numbers are recorded incorrectly, who do not answer calls from the Wisconsin National Guard, or who do not receive email notification from COVID Connect.
  • Fulfill requests for test result documentation by Wisconsin residents who are tested at community-based testing sites.
  • Reduce the burden on local and tribal health departments and other partners that are receiving large call volumes related to test results.

To get the most out of this new hotline, you may want to include the language included below on your website and on your recorded phone greeting.

Local health departments, HERCs, and Emergency Managers can send questions about this hotline to DHSLTHDResponse@wi.gov. Include HOTLINE in the subject line.

Recorded Phone Greeting
If you are calling for your COVID-19 Test Result from a National Guard testing site or for a copy of your COVID-19 Test Results, please call the Wisconsin COVID-19 Results Line at (866) 419-6988. The COVID-19 Results Line is open Monday-Friday from 8 AM to 6 PM.

Website Language
Tested for COVID-19 at a Wisconsin National Guard site? If you’ve been waiting more than five days for your results, or if you need a copy of your results, call the Wisconsin COVID-19 Results Line at (866) 419-6988Getting your COVID-19 tests results has never been easier, thanks to the Wisconsin Department of Health Service’s free COVID-19 Results Line.

Just call 1-866-419-6988 to get connected with a public health professional and informed of your test results. The COVID-19 Results Line is open Monday-Friday from 8 AM – 6 PM. The Results Line only provides test results for COVID-19 testing performed at National Guard testing sites in Wisconsin.
Once you call, you’ll need to provide:

  • The date of your test
  • The National Guard testing site you visited
  • Your name, and
  • Your date of birth

In addition to getting your results over the phone, the Results Line can mail you your test results.
Please wait to call the Results Line until 5 days after your test. If you call before the 5-day mark, they cannot guarantee your results will be ready.Call the COVID-19 Results Line at 1-866-419-6988, Open Monday-Friday, 8 AM – 6 PM.

ICYMI: COVID-19 VON BRIESEN TASK FORCE RESOURCE: WISCONSIN’S FACE COVERING ORDER
On July 30, 2020, Governor Tony Evers issued Emergency Order #1 (the “Order”) requiring every individual in Wisconsin, aged 5 and older, to wear “Face Coverings” except in limited circumstances. This mandate, effective August 1, 2020, and continuing through September 30, 2020, requires Face Coverings be worn in Wisconsin when an individual is both:

  1. Indoors or in an Enclosed Space (excluding private residences), and
  2. Another person or persons is present (who are not members of individual’s household or living unit) in the same room or Enclosed Space.

UPDATED: ROUTES TO RECOVERY FAQ
The Wisconsin Counties Association (WCA) has received multiple questions about the Routes to Recovery program and eligible expenditures.

When received, WCA has submitted questions to the Governor’s office seeking clarification. Please see below the questions WCA has submitted and updated answers (if available) received from the Governor’s office. In addition, we have included questions received by the League of Wisconsin Municipalities and the answers they received.