Gov. Evers urges Wisconsinites to social distance, wear a mask as state reaches ‘inflection point’

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT)– Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers hopes President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump make a speedy recovery after being diagnosed with COVID-19, but it sends a message that anyone can get the virus. The comments come as the state deals with hospitals nearing capacity and outbreaks of the virus at schools and colleges.

Governor Tony Evers said he doesn’t want to use the president as an example but hopes it will show people how serious the virus is.

“Because if somebody is in that tight of a security bubble can get it, anybody can get that,” said Gov. Evers (D).

The president was planning on campaigning in Wisconsin this weekend before his diagnosis. Local and state officials were concerned about the visits as the state is currently averaging more than 2,400 newly confirmed cases each day, according to the Department of Health Services.

“This is a critical inflection point in the state of Wisconsin,” Evers said.

Hospital beds are nearing capacity in the Southeast, Fox Valley and South Central regions of the state. There is an alternate care facility set up at the Wisconsin State Fair grounds, but officials hoped they’d never have to resort to using it.

“We need to make sure that the facility in Milwaukee is available,” Evers said.

The governor said all residents need to come together to stop the spread because we can’t afford to have healthcare systems break down.

“That will kill our economy and it will take years to bring it back,” Evers said.

The surge comes as almost all state universities are reporting new cases from on-campus testing, according to the latest University of Wisconsin System data. Evers said they are working with Interim President and former Governor Tommy Thompson along with some university chancellors to make sure plans are in place. One of the biggest issues is off-campus behavior.

“We are trying our best to figure out how to essentially mandate individual responsibility and that isn’t just for students but for everybody,” Evers said.

With cases climbing, Evers said it’s a recipe for disaster.

“This is going to take an entire community, entire state effort in order to turn this around,” Evers said.

That means social distancing, washing your hands and wearing a mask.