Grant County records surge in COVID cases, warns of impact to schools


LANCASTER, Wis. — Grant County public health officials say they’re experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases coinciding with the return to college and K-12 campuses and warned of further impacts to local schools.

Nearly 70 percent of new cases in the two weeks before September 8 come from people ages 18-27, according to a press release from the Grant County Emergency Operations Center.

The release also points to an increase in probable COVID-19 cases in Grant County. Those are defined as cases that meet clinical criteria and epidemiological evidence without a confirmed lab test. As of September 8, 40 probable cases had been identified in Grant County.

Jeff Kindrai, director of the Grant County Health Department, noted a resulting increase the number of students isolating and said it’s only a matter of time before K-12 schools are more significantly impacted.

”If we continue along this trajectory, there is not much hope of in-person classes continuing through the semester uninterrupted,” Kindrai said in the press release.

He also warned that families should plan for “likely disruptions” to come should schools switch to a virtual format. The press release said each school in Grant County will make those decisions on a case-by-case basis after consulting with the county health department.

Public health officials continue to urge residents to socially distance, wear face coverings, and wash your hands frequently, among other suggestions.

The county is also hosting a free COVID-19 testing site Thursday, Sept, 10, at the Grant County Fairgrounds in Lancaster. The site will be open from 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.