‘This is about saving lives:’ Milwaukee officials urge awareness as virus cases rise

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MILWAUKEE -- As the coronavirus continues to spread from person to person in Milwaukee at a high rate, the city's health department and other leaders have come up with meaningful messages.

A series of PSAs launched by the Milwaukee Health Department is designed to increase awareness and share ways to stay healthy.

City health leaders on Thursday night, March 26 said the largest concentrations of cases were in the central city and north side neighborhoods with a high density of African-American residents.

Tom Barrett

Tom Barrett

"This is about saving lives. We're going to keep hammering home the message -- please stay at home," Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said.

Barrett has connected with faith leaders to help spread the word.

"I have always found the faith community is a very powerful tool in allowing us to reach more people," said Barrett.

He also shared a message from his conversations with Hmong leaders.

"They are seeing some individuals who are, in essence, blaming the Asian community. They asked me and I was more than happy to say I will speak out against xenophobia. I will speak out against blaming the Asian community," Barrett said.

MPD Chief Alfonso Morales

As for Milwaukee law enforcement, Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales kicked-off a hand-washing challenge to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus, working to broaden important messages to flatten the curve in cases.

"This is about an illness that is effecting this world," Morales said.

The Milwaukee Health Department is working to push out more content on its Facebook page to get trusted and beneficial information to all communities.

Resources to keep you informed about COVID-19

CLICK HERE to view the Milwaukee County COVID-19 dashboard.

CLICK HERE to view the latest COVID-19 totals (updated daily at 2 p.m.) from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

  • If you have questions or immediate needs related to COVID-19, you can:
    • Text COVID19 to 211-211
    • Visit 211Wisconsin.org
    • Call 211. Call volumes are high, please be patient and try to use the text or online options first.

CoronavirusNow.com: A Fox Television Stations initiative to provide you with the most up-to-date national and international news on COVID-19.

Helpful phone numbers

  • Milwaukee Health Department: 414-286-3521
  • If you've lost a job and need help with unemployment: 414-435-7069

About COVID-19 (from the CDC)

Symptoms: Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure (based on the incubation period of MERS-CoV viruses).

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
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