The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has downgraded Dane County’s COVID-19 community transmission level from “high” to “substantial,” making it the only county in the state that’s not seeing high levels of transmission.
Under the CDC’s definition, a high transmission rate means the number of new cases in the past week exceeds 100 per 100,000 people, or the percentage of positive diagnostic tests for the week is above 10 percent. As of yesterday, the county’s weekly case rate was 93.65 per 100,000 people, and its percent positivity rate is 3.13 percent, the CDC site shows.
With 74.4 percent of its population having received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 71.8 percent having completed the vaccine series, Dane County has the highest vaccination levels of any Wisconsin county.
The county has a mask mandate in place that’s due to expire Nov. 5, though the county’s health agency has already extended the emergency order several times. The CDC says areas with high or substantial levels of community transmission should require masks in public, indoor settings.
“Dane County is both the county with the highest vaccination rate in the state and the only county in the state currently utilizing the added protection of requiring masks indoors,” said Public Health Madison & Dane County Communications Coordinator Morgan Finke in an email. “We have always said we believe a layered approach is what will help us slow the spread of illness.”
See the CDC map of county transmission levels here: https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view