Richland Center, WI:  A virtual Emergency Operations Center meeting was held this morning to share information between Richland County officials and community partners in a joint response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Public Health Manager/Local Health Officer, Rose Kohout announced that as of 2:00pm Monday, October 26th the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) confirmed that in the state of Wisconsin there were 201,049 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 1,777,892 have tested negative, there were 1,788 deaths, and 10,416 hospitalizations due to COVID-19.  Of those that tested positive for COVID-19 in the state of Wisconsin, 5% have been hospitalized.

Emergency Operations partners have decided to offer more up-to-date local data on the condition of our county that might not match the numbers offered by the State.  Public Health Manager/Local Health Officer, Rose Kohout announced that as of 8:00am Tuesday, October 27th there are 449 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Richland County, 6,856 have tested negative, there are 134 active cases, and 307 individuals who had tested positive have been released from quarantine.  Of those 449 individuals who tested positive, 441 individuals have been recovering at home, 23 have been hospitalized at some point, and there were 8 COVID-19 related deaths.

Richland County has secured the ability to offer routine FREE COVID-19 community testing events to our citizens weekly on MONDAYS and THURSDAYS at the Richland County Fairgrounds.  The schedule is as follows:

Thursday, October 22nd          9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Monday, October 26th             9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Thursday, October 29th           9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Monday, November 2nd          9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Thursday, November 5th         9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Monday, November 9th           9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Thursday, November 12th       9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Monday, November 16th         9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Thursday, November 19th       9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Monday, November 23rd         9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Monday, November 30th         9am-1pm                     Richland County Event

Thursday, December 3rd         9am-4pm                     WI National Guard Event

Appointments are not required, but it is requested that those who wish to be tested pre-register at https://register.covidconnect.wi.gov.  The website allows individuals to register for testing in advance with their personal information and gives them a QR code to scan at the testing site.  Individuals who utilize this option will receive an email with their test results rather than a phone call.  This website and technology will continue to be utilized at all Richland County community testing events.

The Richland County Events on MONDAYS are only for Richland County residents who meet specific testing criteria.  The WI National Guard Events on THURSDAYS are open to Richland County residents and those in our surrounding communities (age 5 and older) who are experiencing one or more symptoms of COVID-19 and for asymptomatic individuals per Public Health recommendations.  It was noted that Richland County is researching location options to continue these testing sites during the winter months.

The Richland Hospital continues to offer COVID-19 drive-thru testing from 1 pm to 4 pm Monday thru Friday for hospital & clinic patients displaying COVID-19 symptoms or to those that have a confirmed exposureAll persons requesting testing will need to call the Richland Hospital and be registered BEFORE arriving at the drive-thru.  The Richland Hospital Clinic campus continues to offer voluntary medical procedures and Primary Care visits, while also continuing to offer Tele-Health patient visits.  Richland Hospital Clinic patients needing hands-on medical care for any COVID-19 symptoms should call the hospital main number (608) 647-6321 or clinic main number (608) 647-6161 BEFORE coming to the facility.

Individuals who have been tested for COVID-19 WILL receive their results from a testing site or healthcare provider.  However, due to record high numbers of COVID-19 cases, Public Health has reached capacity and may not call you to complete a contact tracing investigation.  For this reason, we ask that any newly diagnosed person with COVID-19 begin to isolate themselves immediately and go to the Richland County COVID-19 webpage at https://covid.co.richland.wi.us/if-you-are-sick-or-have-been-exposed/  in order to receive isolation and contact tracing notification guidance.

 Richland School District Administrator, Jarred Burke announced that the Doudna School will be transitioning to virtual learning from October 28th – November 6th.  All other schools in the Richland School District will continue face-to-face instruction at this time.  The Ithaca School District will be returning to face-to-face instruction on October 29th.

Richland County Community Partners shared the status of their individual organization’s emergency response, reviewed staffing levels and PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) inventory, and discussed priority topics to assist with preventing the further transmission of COVID-19 in our community.

Citizens are encouraged to check out the Richland County COVID-19 Dashboard which offers helpful data to better understand the impact of the pandemic globally and locally:  https://covid.co.richland.wi.us/2020/04/21/richland-county-covid-19-dashboard/.  For the most up-to-date COVID-19 information, follow Richland County Health & Human Services on Facebook or consult the following websites:

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