JVG_200707_COVID

Registered nurse Kaelyn Duesterbeck waits with testing materials in hand as a vehicle pulls into a drive-through COVID-19 testing facility at Mercyhealth North in Janesville.

Monday marked a tie for the largest daily increase in confirmed coronavirus cases in Rock County with 41 new cases reported, matching the high from May 21.

This comes on the heels of new data showing cases of coronavirus are increasing quicker in Janesville than in Beloit and the rest of Rock County.

Of the tests reported Monday, 31% were positive, the second-highest positive rate in a day, trailing only 33% on April 24, according to data from the Rock County Public Health Department.

There are 250 active, confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Rock County. That’s up 48 from Thursday, according to health department data.

There have been 940 confirmed cases of the virus in Rock County since the first case was reported in the county March 19. Twenty-four people have died.

Four people are hospitalized with COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, across the county’s four hospitals, according to the data.

Weekly data reported by municipality shows Janesville saw a week-to-week increase of 46 cases since June 29, more than double the weekly increase of 19 seen in Beloit.

All other Rock County communities are counted together and saw a weekly increase of 14 cases, according to the data.

Beloit still holds a lion’s share of the county’s cases with 503 total, but daily increases in Beloit have largely plateaued since the beginning of June.

Cases in Janesville have been trending upward in recent weeks.

Daily increases of cases based on when the individual was tested in Janesville from June 22 to July 5 range from one to 12 with an average of 5.33 per day in that time frame. No data was recorded for July 4.

In Beloit, daily increases in the same time frame range between one and seven with an average of 3.9 per day. No data was reported for July 4 or 5.

Kelsey Cordova, spokeswoman for the health department, acknowledged the health department has identified the municipal trends and case increases and are discussing possible reasons for them internally.

Cordova was unable to answer further questions from The Gazette by press time.

Statewide, cases in individuals ages 20 to 29 have made up a growing share of the state’s confirmed coronavirus cases at 24% of total cases, according to a Monday news release from the state Department of Health Services.

A news release last week from Rock County confirmed the county is seeing an uptick in cases in younger individuals.

Individuals between the ages of 25 and 34 make up 17% of the county’s confirmed cases, tied for the highest with people ages 45 to 54.

Increases in cases among young people coincides with data showing there have been no new deaths statewide from COVID-19 since July 3.

Young, healthy people are considered to be less at risk of serious illness because of the virus than older people or people with underlying health conditions.

It is not impossible, however, for a young person to become seriously ill from the virus.

Statewide, 3% of hospitalizations have been individuals between ages 20 and 29. There have been eight people in their 20s who have died from the virus.

John Raymond, president and CEO of the Medical College of Wisconsin, said in a news release young people are more likely to be socially active, gather in bars, attend parties and work as front-line essential workers; all of which lend to a higher probability of picking up the virus.

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