• The Heart of Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce is a resource for businesses and the community. In an effort to keep the community informed we have developed a resource page related to the COVID-19

    This is not just about COVID-19 but about doing our part to ensure there is capacity at our medical facilities to be able to assist with ALL illnesses. This is not about us as individuals but about protecting people with vulnerable immune/compromised systems and our friends and family over 60.

     It is important for all of us to continue to support local businesses with our individual patronage. Of course, continue to take appropriate precautions with healthy habits like washing your hands, avoiding direct contact and staying home if you’re sick. Listed below are some ways you can continue to support local businesses with limited exposure. See the resources below! Please call, email and stay in close touch. Let's be proactive now. This is a true test of all of our leadership to ensure that Central Wisconsin’s business community can navigate through this challenging time.

    We thank our members, businesses and the community for their continued support during this time.

  • Talking about making sure everyone can access quality, affordable healthcare, and I'm excited to host another #BadgerBounceback Live Session on Accessible & Affordable Healthcare in Wisconsin.
  • Economic recovery and opportunity are key to our state's success
  • Bill Providing Tax Relief to Wisconsin Businesses and Families
  • B.O.S.S. Video Series - Businesses Offering Sustainable Solutions
  • Patrick Gatterman, Northward Peddle & Paddle
  • Dean Veneman, The Promo Agency
  • Wisconsin Rapids City Times
  • Coldwell Banker Siewert Realtors
  • Business Coalition Update
  • WMC - COVID-19 Response
  • Update on the “Safer At Home Order” with WEDC Secretary & CEO Missy Hughes:
  • Back to Business
  • Lobby Hours

    Monday - Friday | 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM



    NOTE: Ther current guidelines for events: Events with 10+ are not encouraged. Nor are smaller events if they will unite people who are vulnerable (elderly, chronic health, etc.)


    • YMCA
      • They have availability in childcare for ages 6 weeks to 13 years at this time that is Licensed by the State of Wisconsin and State Assistance Accepted.
      • Priority is given to health care workers, emergency personnel and families with no other options for childcare during this time.


    Wood County is included with many others that have applied for SBA Disaster Assistance. 

    The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Upon a request received from a state’s or territory’s Governor, SBA will issue under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, an Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration. More details to come. 


    Aspirus is working with local and state public health officials to prepare for possible cases of COVID-19 in our area. To prevent the spread of the virus and provide the most appropriate care to the communities we serve, Aspirus has established a call center for people concerned they might be infected with COVID-19. The dedicated line will be operational and staffed by live operators during the following hours:

    7 a.m. – 7 p.m., Monday – Friday

    8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday – Sunday

    Aspirus implements visitor restrictions >>


    Marshfield Clinic

    Marshfield Clinic Health System urges Wisconsin residents to heed the warnings of local, state and national health officials to slow the progression of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

    They support Gov. Tony Evers' announcement Thursday declaring a public health emergency in Wisconsin. It is the first step of many that all of us as a community must embrace in the coming weeks and months.

    Marshfield Clinic Health System has prepared for what is anticipated to be a significant increase in coronavirus cases in Wisconsin.

    Check out their News Network with all things COVID-19 related >>

    https://waow.com/   https://www.wsaw.com/


  • Lawmakers To Vote On Blocking Vaccine Mandates, More Control Over Federal COVID-19 Funds
    State lawmakers are set to vote Tuesday on Republican proposals that would bar health officials and employers from mandating COVID-19 vaccinations, require state workers to return to in-person work and give the GOP-controlled Legislature more power over how federal COVID-19 stimulus funds are spent in Wisconsin. All of the measures could face vetoes from Democratic Gov. Tony Evers. Under one vaccination bill, state and local health officers would not be allowed to require the public to receive COVID-19 vaccinations. A second bill would bar employers from requiring their workers to receive vaccinations.

    Appeals Court panel appears skeptical of business groups' effort to block COVID-19 records
    Judges on a state appeals court based in Madison appeared skeptical Wednesday toward an effort from Wisconsin business groups to block the release of state health department data on businesses linked to COVID-19 cases. The case is one of the most notable public records cases during the COVID-19 era in Wisconsin, and pits business’ right to privacy against the public’s right to information.
    ‘Plan to be in Madison in the fall:’ UW-Madison details fall semester plans
    As more people in Wisconsin become vaccinated from COVID-19 and gathering restrictions are gradually loosened, UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank says she anticipates the fall semester will be similar to pre-pandemic life on campus. “I feel confident that next semester will look more like Fall 2019 than Fall 2020, with offices occupied and throngs of students changing classes in the middle of the day. But it will be different than before – it’s a new normal, not our old normal,” the chancellor wrote in a blog post published Thursday.
    DHS Reports 14 New Coronavirus Variant Cases, More Than 2.5M Vaccine Doses Administered
    More than 2.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Wisconsin, according to health officials. More than 300,000 doses were administered last week. That's compared to about 200,000 weekly doses in mid-February, Julie Willems Van Dijk, deputy secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, said during a briefing Thursday. She also noted that Wisconsin will receive an uptick in doses from the federal government next week, including about 35,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson's one-shot vaccine.

    Wisconsin Supreme Court strikes down stay at home order
    In a 4-3 decision, the Wisconsin Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down the state's stay at home order, handing a defeat to Democratic Gov. Tony Evers in his administration's response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In its order, the Supreme Court said the stay at home order is "invalid, and therefore, unenforceable," so some businesses and restaurants presumably may open immediately. But some counties, such as Dane, have already issued replacement orders enforcing the elements of the governor's order, and therefore must remain closed.

    ▶ Governor Evers Shelter in Place Order

    ▶ US Dept. of Homeland Security Guidance on Critical Infrastructure Workers

    ▶ WEDC COVID-19 Business Resources

    ▶ WEDC “Safer at Home” Information and Essential Business Determinations

    ▶ DWD Work Share Fact Sheet

    COVID-19 Update: Governor Evers Issues "Safer At Home" Order - Summary Provided >>>>Full Article

    If employers shuts down temporarily due to COVID19, can employees file for unemployment? Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development is here to answer any questions.>>>> Full Article





    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed by President Trump on March 27, 2020 to provide direct financial relief to businesses and employees. It includes items like loans for small businesses, changes to SBA loans, payments to individuals, expanded unemployment benefits, work share benefits, and paid leave changes.

    ▶ Summary of CARES Act

    Business Related Tax Provisions in the CARES Act

    ▶ U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act


    The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) provides new paid sick leave benefits for employees of companies with less than 500 employees, new FMLA benefits for some employees to care for children now home from school due to COVID-19, and more. To help everyone with compliance, the Department of Labor has issued extensive guidance on the FFCRA. DOL also has a page established with additional resources, such as HR posters that contain information employers are now required to post.

    ▶ WMC Summary of the Family First Coronavirus Response Act

    ▶ DOL Guidance Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Questions and Answers

    ▶ DOL COVID-19 and the American Workplace

    U.S. private payrolls dive by a record 20.2 million
    U.S. private employers laid off a record 20.236 million workers in April as mandatory business closures in response to the novel coronavirus outbreak savaged the economy, setting up the overall labor market for historic job losses last month.
    US: AstraZeneca may have used outdated info in vaccine trial
    Results from a U.S. trial of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine may have used “outdated information,” U.S. federal health officials said in a statement early Tuesday. The Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB), an independent committee overseeing the trial, has “expressed concern that AstraZeneca may have included outdated information from that trial, which may have provided an incomplete view of the efficacy data,” the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) said in a statement.
    Enemy within: Experts warn US not learning from past pandemic mistakes
    When it comes to combating COVID-19, experts and officials warn the U.S. is its own worst enemy as governors across the country lift restrictions and the public grows increasingly weary of pandemic life. The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned Monday that the U.S. is at “a fork in the road” on the pandemic, with the two extremes perhaps best illustrated by spring breakers partying in Florida over the weekend while about 1,000 people are dying of COVID-19 every day.
    Yellen says Biden administration weighing tax structure changes to fund infrastructure bill
    Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Tuesday that President Biden is exploring changes to the tax structure in order to offset the cost of Democrats' next big-ticket economic spending package. While testifying before the House Financial Services Committee, Yellen said an infrastructure package — which the White House is expected to pursue as its next legislative priority — will likely be paid for by reforms to the tax code.


  • Reported Cases

    Overall, COVID-19 cases have decreased for the past 9 weeks. The current 7-day moving average of new cases (53,200) decreased 78.7% compared with the highest peak on January 11, 2021, (249,389), and 20.9% compared with the second highest peak on July 23, 2020 (67,277). On March 17, there was a 3.0% decrease in the 7-day average number of daily cases reported compared with the prior week, which provides an encouraging sign of continued progress.

    New Cases Reported*

    Current 7-Day Average**

    Total Cases Reported

    Prior 7-Day Average

    Peak of 7-Day Average***

    Change in 7-Day Average since Prior Week

    * New cases reported here may differ slightly from those on the COVID Data Tracker as new methods are being used to account for historical corrections.

    ** In the current week, 4,007 historical cases were excluded, and in the prior week, 87,670 historical cases were excluded.

    *** Highest peak for 7-day average (January 11, 2021).

    Note: The table above excludes historical data from the new cases, the current and previous 7-day averages, and the percent change in the 7-day average.

    Daily Trends in COVID-19 Cases in the United States Reported to CDC

    red line

    7-Day moving average




    Reported Cases in US

    Number of Jurisdictions with ≥1 Case Reported











    Cases of Variants of Concern in the United StatesMap of the United States showing Emerging Variant Cases of B.1.1.7 in the United States

    More Variants Data and Maps



    The percent of COVID-19 RT-PCR tests that are positive (percent positivity) has increased slightly from the previous week. The 7-day average of percent positivity from tests is now 4.2%. No states or territories have higher than 10% positivity. The 7-day average test volume for March 5-March 11, 2021, was 1,170,972, down 5.0% from 1,231,973 for the prior 7 days.

    Total Tests Reported

    7-Day Average Test Volume

    7-Day Average
    % Positivity

    Change in 7-Day
    % Positivity

    COVID-19 Viral (RT-PCR) LaboratoryCOVID-19 Viral (RT-PCR) Laboratory Test 7-day Percent Positivity by State/Territory Test 7-day Percent Positivity by State/Territory



    The U.S. COVID-19 Vaccination Program began December 14. As of March 18, 2021, 115.7 million vaccine doses have been administered. Overall, about 75.5 million people, or 22.7% of the U.S. population, have received at least one dose of vaccine. About 41.0 million people, or 12.3% of the U.S. population have been fully vaccinated*. As of March 18, the 7-day average number of administered vaccine doses reported to CDC per day was 2.5 million, a 12.1% increase from the previous week.

    Recent COVID Data Tracker updates show the percent of the population 65 years and older who have been vaccinated, and breakdowns of vaccine delivery, administration, and series completion by type. As of March 18, 66.3% of people 65 years or older have received at least one dose of vaccine; 38.6% are fully vaccinated.

    Vaccines Administered


    People who received at least one dose

    People who are fully vaccinated*


    Daily Change in Number of COVID-19 Vaccinations in the United States Reported to CDC

    red line

    7-Day moving averageChart showing Daily Change in Total Number of COVID-19 Vaccinations in the United States Reported to CDC

    *People who are fully vaccinated (formerly “receiving 2 doses”) represents the number of people who have received the second dose in a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series or one dose of the single-shot J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine.

    New Hospital Admissions

    Hospital admissions of patients with confirmed COVID-19 decreased 71.6% from the national 7-day average peak of 16,540 admissions on January 9, 2021, to 4,696 admissions over the week ending March 16, 2021. The average number of daily admissions fell by 4.2%, compared to the previous week.

    New Admissions

    Current 7-Day Average

    Total New Admissions

    Prior 7-Day Average

    Peak 7-Day Average

    Change in 7-Day Average

    Daily Trends in Number of New COVID-19 Hospital Admissions in the United StatesChart showing New Admissions of Patients with Confirmed COVID-19

    The most recent data in the vertical gray bar are provisional and should be interpreted with caution.

    More Hospital Data



    In recent weeks, the number of COVID-19 deaths has declined. Overall, deaths have decreased for the past 9 weeks. The current 7-day moving average of new deaths (1,025) decreased 69.7% compared with the highest peak on January 13, 2021 (3,379), and 10.7% compared with the peak on August 1, 2020 (1,148).  As of March 17, 2021, a total of 535,217 COVID-19 deaths were reported.

    New Deaths Reported*

    Current 7-Day Average**

    Total Deaths Reported

    Prior 7-Day Average

    Peak of 7-day Average***

    Change in the 7-Day Average Since the Prior Week



    Daily Trends in Number of COVID-19 Deaths in the United States Reported to CDCChart showing Daily Trends in Number of COVID-19 Deaths in the United States Reported to CDC

    red line

    7-Day moving average

    resize icon

    * New deaths reported here may differ slightly from those on the COVID Data Tracker as new methods are being used to account for historical corrections.

    ** In the current week, there were 195 historical deaths excluded, and in the prior week, there were 138 historical deaths excluded.

    *** The highest peak in the 7-day average of new deaths (Jan 11, 2021).

    Note: The table above excludes historical data from the new deaths, the current and previous 7-day averages, and the percent change in the 7-day average.

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