Weekly Briefing, January 14, 2021

The 7-day positivity rate is 1.5% for students and 0.5% for employees. Since January 7, 87 university members have tested positive, a decrease from the 109 who tested positive the week before.

After cases dropped statewide for several weeks, we have seen a rise in positive cases across Wisconsin and in Dane County and we expect to see that increase reflected in campus cases as well. With this high level of community spread, it remains critical to take precautions: limit trips out, avoid gathering in-person, practice physical distancing, wash hands frequently, stay home when sick, and wear a mask in public.

The Spring 2021 testing program and Safer Badgers app have launched. For more information on how to schedule a test and new testing requirements, and to download the app, visit covidresponse.wisc.edu/testing.

University Health Services continues to vaccinate eligible Phase 1a employees and students against COVID-19, including frontline health care workers and others in direct contact with COVID-19 patients or the virus. Eligible employees and students should respond to email messages to schedule an appointment for vaccination.

Students and employees should review university guidance on COVID-19 precautions around travel. If you’re traveling back to Madison, test before you travel if possible, limit your out-of-home activities as much as you can for 10 days before you travel, and postpone your travel if you test positive or have symptoms of COVID-19. Once you arrive in Madison, limit yourself to only essential activities (such as attending class and work) until you’ve received two negative on-campus test results. Schedule tests through the Safer Badgers app.

A state of emergency and public health emergency remain in effect in the state of Wisconsin, extending the face covering requirement in order to address hospital bed and staff shortages. A local order from Public Health Madison & Dane County remains in effect and includes a ban on indoor off-campus gatherings of more than 10 people. UW–Madison remains subject to state orders.

Campus operations: For updates on campus operations as the spring semester begins, visit covidresponse.wisc.edu.

Hospitalizations: No UW–Madison students or employees have reported current hospitalizations due to COVID-19. PHMDC tracks hospitalizations on its dashboard.

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