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‘Glimmer of hope:’ Wisconsin health official says COVID-19 curve is flattening

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MADISON — Wisconsin’s chief medical officer for communicable diseases said Friday that data on coronavirus infections continues to show that the state is “flattening the curve.”

Dr. Ryan Westergaard first said on Monday that there were positive signs with the slowing increase in COVID-19 cases, a message he repeated again Thursday and Friday.

“We are flattening the curve,” he said. He called it a “glimmer of hope that what we’re doing is making a big difference.”

Wisconsin is under a stay-at-home order which has resulted in the closing of schools and all nonessential businesses. Confirmed cases of COVID-19 have gone up each day this week between 10% and 14%. But that is a lower increase than what earlier models, based on projections through the first half of March, were showing, he said.

As of Friday, there were more than 1,900 confirmed cases in the state and 37 deaths.

Even with the positive news, state health officials have said Wisconsin may not hit a peak in cases for weeks and they won’t project when it will be safe to loosen the limitations on movement and allow businesses to reopen. Gov. Tony Evers’ emergency order for people to remain at home runs through April 24, but could be extended.

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