Roughly 88% of all UW-Madison students who have tested positive for COVID-19 have experienced symptoms, PHMDC officials say

Local businesses voice opposition to Amazon location on UW campus

MADISON, Wis. — The vast majority of University of Wisconsin-Madison students who have tested positive for COVID-19 have reported that they’ve experienced symptoms during their infections, according to Public Health Madison & Dane County officials.

PHMDC officials said Wednesday that 88.3% of students who have tested positive have reported different levels of sickness.

“There are a lot of theories about what Covid-19 is and isn’t, but the science and data from these cases on the UW-Madison campus shows most people who get it, get sick,” Dane County Executive Joe Parisi said. “As the father of a UW senior, I understand the worry parents and their students alike face right now. The time to effectuate change is now – before the virus infects more students and staff. We did virtual learning on campus last spring and we can do it again because human health and well-being should always come first.”

As of Tuesday, 2,160 UW-Madison students have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to PHMDC data. Health officials said most of them are undergraduate students who moved to Madison at the start of the semester.

According to a news release, at least 7% of the more than 31,000 undergraduates on the UW-Madison campus have tested positive for COVID-19.

As more and more students test positive, local leaders are urging the public to be cooperative with contact tracers to help mitigate the spread of the virus.

Since July 28, PHMDC and UW-Madison’s University Health Services have attempted 3,991 contact tracing interviews. About 90% of them resulted in an interview with a public health official. Officials were unable to make contact with 10% of all patients who tested positive between Monday and July 28.

“Timely Public Health contact tracing bolsters our ability to quickly identify and isolate illness,” Parisi said. “It’s incredibly helpful not only for yourself, but also those you care about, work with, and even take care of to have an honest conversation with a contact tracer. Not doing so just prolongs the misery of this pandemic for all of us.”