The highly contagious Omicron Variant of COVID-19 has been detected in Wisconsin and is anticipated to cause a rapid increase in disease activity in the coming weeks. Public health officials are actively researching how Omicron differs from other variants. Current data from other states and regions of the world show that it spreads more easily than previous strains, including the Delta variant.

There is a serious risk that continued, increased numbers of COVID-19 cases will overwhelm an already strained health care system, leading to dangerous situations where patients experiencing medical emergencies may not be able to receive immediate, adequate, life-saving attention and care due to lack of hospital capacity.

Taking action to prevent or minimize the impending surge in hospitalizations and deaths is the responsibility of all Wisconsinites. We can all do our part to slow the spread of Omicron by collectively taking several simple actions. These include:

  • Getting vaccinated for COVID-19, including a booster dose as soon as you are eligible.
  •  Wearing a well-fitting mask in indoor spaces when others are present who do not live with you.
  •  Celebrating safely over the holidays by keeping gatherings small, getting tested before visitingothers, and staying home if you test positive or have any symptoms.

Click here to view the public health advisory memo.