MADISON, WI – With more than 500 new cases in Dane County over the last week, UW Health experts are concerned about the trend and urge the public to avoid behavior that leads to the spread of the virus.

“The increased cases cannot be explained solely by increased testing. The significant increase in COVID-19 cases is a result of our behaviors and decisions,” said Dr. Jeff Pothof, UW Health chief quality officer. “Although we have not yet seen an increase in patient hospitalization for COVID-19, hospital admissions often lag behind a rise in cases.”

As the Summer weather settles in and the 4th of July approaches, parties, family gatherings and vacations can have a high risk for spreading the virus. To keep safe, UW Health urges everyone to remember the following:

  • Practice physical distancing–stay six feet away from people who do not live in your household
  • Wear face coverings–especially if you will be indoors with others (e.g. grocery stores)
  • Wash hands–frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Stay home if possible – especially if you have any symptoms (e.g. fever, cough)

UW Health reminds the public that Dane County recently amended guidelines for Phase 2 of the ‘Forward Dane’ to limit private gatherings to 10 or fewer people, and increased restrictions on bars and restaurants. Whether you’re staying local or traveling for the 4th of July, it is important to limit your potential exposure to the virus at this time when cases are increasing locally and across the country.

Finally, UW Health reminds our young people to wear face coverings and practice physical distancing in social settings. According to Public Health Madison & Dane County, half of the recent surge COVID-19 cases comes from people ages 20-29. Young people can contract and spread the disease, as well as suffer complications from the virus.

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