Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Blase, science-averse WI's pols overlook Covid-19 facts

Bad news Wednesday: Record number of Covid-19 cases in Wisconsin reported:
The percentage of positive tests jumped back to 8%, the second straight day of increase after it fell to 2.9% on Sunday. A 14-day downward trend of positive test rate is a key metric in the Badger Bounce Back guidelines that many businesses are following as they make plans to reopen.
4:45 p.m. update - And I now see this alarming news at Urban Milwaukee:
State Sees Biggest Hike In New COVID-19 Hospital Admissions In 30 Days
A total of 51 people were newly hospitalized with the disease, a 30-day high and above the average of 34 since DHS began reporting the data daily on April 4th. 
In Milwaukee County, the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 has gone from 146 to 183 in the past week. 
“This is a concerning 29 percent increase in COVID-19 patients in our hospitals,” said Dr. Ben Weston, Milwaukee County medical services director, during a Wednesday afternoon press briefing.
This is not the trend any sane person is looking for, yet some people may shrug off the Covid-19 pandemic now that our President is practicing medicine without a license.

And 92,000+ US deaths are heading for normalization, with Memorial Day on May 25th shaping up as extra grim because the death toll will likely surpasses an astonishing 100,000 by then.

In Wisconsin, the shoulder shrugging was given another incomprehensible imprimatur by right-wing Wisconsin state judges who awarded like-minded legislators the seat they coveted at the end of the bar from which they also practiced absentee medicine and flat-out bad political science.

So I'm not expecting these failed politicians to take a look at real information published daily by real doctors and health-care professionals - but you can read for yourselves what the pandemic has done to Wisconsin and why it wouldn't take much of a spike in cases which continue to accumulate to again sandbag front-line medical staffs and facilities with fresh risk, statewide suffering and death.

So before we waltz off into Bucky's Land of Denial - wherein Wisconsin was the only state among the 50 which let elected judges to throw out a coherent, commonsense Covid-19 prevention plan, start with this state website and absorb that:

* Confirmed Covid-19 cases in Wisconsin in just two months went from three on March 20 to 13,413 on May 20, and deaths during the same two months rose from three to 481.

You may not know any of these people, but they represent your fellow citizens and do not deserve to be forgotten.

* Only 33% of all hospital beds in Wisconsin are immediately available, and there are still, statewide, 129 Covid-19 patients in intensive care units and 301 Covid-19 patients on ventilators, data show

The data also show the southeast region, which has the highest number of Covid-19 cases, has just 25% available bed capacity; the other six regions' bed availabilities range from 26-42%.

However, a survey two years ago showed 58.3% state hospital bed availability statewide
2018 survey by the Wisconsin Hospital Association of 152 hospitals shows a total of 12,449 hospital beds with an average occupancy rate of 58.3 percent. About 11,000 of those beds are in "general medical-surgical" hospitals, as opposed to more specialized hospitals like psychiatric, rehabilitation, or drug abuse facilities. 
So it doesn't wouldn't take much of a spike to again severely stress the system and undo or diminish the productive results of the now-defunct state "Safer-at-Home" order.

Again, let's also remember that patient numbers all come with names, faces, families, and the State Supreme Court in servitude to right-wing GOP legislators did state hospitals no favors as their staffs, also with names, faces and families are working to recover from damaging and dangerous first-wave case loads.

* Further into the data, we see that there are 299 ongoing facility-wide outbreak investigations underway, principally in nursing homes and workplace sites. The nursing home outbreaks killed a lot of people's grandparents and long-time spouses, while various workplaces became danger zones to state residents whom State Supreme Court Chief Justice Patricia Roggensack decided were not 'regular folk.'

But we have seen, the virus does not make those distinctions, and will continue its cruel cull if the Justices and the GOP 'leaders' like GOP Assembly Speaker Robin Vos guessed wrong.


Katrina said...

Robin Vos' district has been particularly hard hit with positive tests and deaths.

Anonymous said...

So, will the Democrats run a campaign or will they punt like they did against Tiffany? Think about this, only about 7 percent of the voters had to change their minds and we would have finally had a real US Congresswoman instead of a Trump lapdog. There is no doubt that Zunker, a no-name candidate could have pulled off an upset, but the campaign was almost nonexistent.