Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers announced on Tuesday that Wisconsin’s mask mandate will be extended until Nov. 21st. The mask mandate was set to expire this coming Monday after being in place since early August. However, Wisconsin is experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases, particularly among young adults between 18-24. Now 18-24 year old age group has a rate 5 times higher than any other age group. The increase has occurred within the past month and is likely due to in-person social gatherings.

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The news release also mentions that 8 Wisconsin cities were listed in the top 20 cities in the US where COVID-19 cases were rising the fastest. Among those were 6 cities with University of Wisconsin System campuses.

To further emphasize the need of the mask mandate, the Governor’s office shares statistics from the health department showing that the daily number of new cases rose from 678 – 1,791 in just 3 weeks. That’s a 2.6 fold increase in a very short amount of time.

While the surge in cases between 18-24 year olds is driving the statistics up, that doesn’t mean that it’s confined to college campuses.

Dr. Ryan Westergaard, Wisconsin’s Chief Medical Officer says we need to be vigilant this fall,

““We need to do everything we can now to slow the spread of COVID-19 and prepare for the winter. That is why we need to continue wearing masks and practicing physical distancing. It is also why we encourage everyone to get a flu shot this year; the flu shot cannot protect you from COVID-19, but by helping protect you from the flu, it helps strengthen our COVID-10 response here in Wisconsin by preserving hospital and testing capacity.”

Currently there are 105 cases in Douglas County reported in the last 14 days.