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Published on August 30, 2021

Hospitalizations, vaccinations rise

Gundersen Health System’s hospital capacity is stressed due to COVID-19-related hospitalizations. It's becoming much more difficult for the system to provide care to everyone who needs it. 

There has been a significant increase in COVID-related hospitalizations at Gundersen since late July. Many recent patients are unvaccinated and have been infected by the highly contagious COVID-19 Delta variant. Many recent patients are also younger and have more severe illness than patients seen earlier this year and in 2020. 

At the same time, Gundersen provided more than 1,100 COVID-19 vaccine doses across its system the week of Aug. 23. This is the most doses provided in a week since early June and nearly 500 more doses than the week of Aug. 16. This was driven by demand for third doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine for immunocompromised people age 12 and older. 

Most important actions 

  • Get vaccinated - Free, safe COVID-19 vaccine is the best protection against severe illness, including hospitalization and death and help ease stress on Gundersen’s hospital capacity. 

  • Layer protections on top of vaccine – Masking, distancing, and hand hygiene at work, school, and any indoor, public spaces significantly lowers your risk of COVID-19 infection. 

How to get the vaccine 

Anyone age 12 and older, patients or non-patients, can get the free, safe COVID-19 vaccine at Gundersen.  

All three approved COVID-19 vaccines – Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson – are available during walk-in appointments at the Gundersen Onalaska Clinic 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. 

Gundersen is providing COVID-19 third doses of Pfizer and Moderna vaccine to high-risk individuals. 

COVID-19 vaccine is also available during Onalaska Family Medicine and Pediatrics appointments for those with scheduled appointments, along with primary care appointments at Gundersen regional clinic locations. Please talk to your healthcare provider to get questions answered. 

Adult Gundersen patients can walk-in, schedule their appointment through MyChart, or call the scheduling line at (608) 775-6829. Adult non-patients can walk-in or call the scheduling line at (608) 775-6829, option 2, for a vaccine appointment.  

Patients under age 18 need parent or guardian consent in person or by calling the Gundersen scheduling line at (608) 775-6829.   

what to expect

We've taken steps at all our locations to keep you and our staff healthy and safe. Here's what to expect when you visit us.

Stay safe