Wisconsin passed the milestone of 500,000 total confirmed COVID-19 cases Friday, as the state ramps up distribution of vaccine doses to frontline workers.
The state Department of Health Services reported a total of 502,012 coronavirus cases since the pandemic began, with 3,474 new cases Friday. The seven-day average number of cases reached 2,715, after increasing every day since a low of 1,882 on Dec. 26.
The department also reported 40 new deaths caused by COVID-19 complications, raising the death toll to 5,119. According to DHS data, the average weekly deaths due to the coronavirus has been increasing since bottoming out on Monday. DHS numbers on Sunday and Monday are typically lower than they actually are.
COVID data over the holidays has also been difficult to read as officials report that the number of people getting tested for the virus has slumped.
The seven-day average percent positivity appears to be decreasing again, according to DHS, but that metric has jumped up and then down since reaching a high back in early November. DHS reports a seven-day percent positive (by person) of 29.9 percent Friday, and a seven-day percent positive (by test) of 11.1 percent.
On Thursday, top state health officials said that about 105,000 people have gotten a vaccine so far.
Despite some frustration over the rollout taking too long, DHS Deputy Secretary Julie Willems Van Dijk insisted there is progress in these first few weeks.
On Monday, DHS said 6,000 first doses were administered. On Tuesday there were 8,000. On Wednesday, the agency said there were 11,600 first doses.