WXXI AM News

Brett Dahlberg

Health reporter and producer

Brett is the health reporter and a producer at WXXI News. He has a master’s degree from the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. Before landing at WXXI, he was an intern at WNYC, and he also produced freelance reporting work focused on health and science in New York City. 

Brett grew up in Bremerton, Washington, and holds a bachelor’s degree from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon.

 

Ways to Connect

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Two types of testing for the virus that causes COVID-19 are increasingly accessible in the Rochester area.

One is the test that looks for the virus, allowing doctors to diagnose whether a person is currently infected. The other searches for antibodies, which indicate whether a person was already exposed and fought the virus off.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

The number of people in hospitals for COVID-19 treatment in Monroe County climbed to a new high for a sixth straight day, according to numbers from the county public health department.

The county also received almost 1,994 diagnostic tests results for the novel coronavirus -- the highest daily return since the county began releasing those numbers at the beginning of this month. Of those results, 70 came back positive.

Seth Wenig / AP

Both hospital systems in the Rochester area say they now have more supply than demand for their coronavirus lab tests. Gov. Andrew Cuomo said supply was outpacing demand across New York state, and last week the state health department expanded its guidance for who should be tested.

Andy Ophardt, who manages a primary care clinic in Brighton, said he used to field frequent questions from patients asking about how to get tested for the virus. He had to call testing sites to confirm that people his office referred met an exacting set of criteria.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

The number of people in hospitals for COVID-19 treatment in Monroe County rose to a new high for a fifth straight day on Thursday, according to figures from the county public health department.

There were 157 people in hospitals for the disease on Thursday, the health department said. The number of those people in intensive care units ticked up by one, to 17.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

The number of people in hospitals for COVID-19 treatment in Monroe County rose to a new high for a fourth straight day, according to figures released Wednesday by the county public health department. But the number of people in intensive care units fell, the data showed.

Fewer COVID-19 patients were in ICUs Wednesday than any day since March 25.

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Monroe County and the Finger Lakes region are mostly on track to continue reopening the economy, County Public Health Commissioner Dr. Michael Mendoza said Tuesday. But, he also noted some reservations about rising numbers of hospitalized people and signs that distancing practices are not universal.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The number of people hospitalized for COVID-19 in Monroe County climbed to a new high Monday in data from the county public health department.

The numbers have been climbing for the last nine days -- with the exception of Saturday, when they held steady -- even as the Rochester-Finger Lakes region begins to reopen parts of the economy.

The latest figures showed 136 people in a hospital for COVID-19 in the county.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

New York state’s efforts to contain the novel coronavirus and reopen the economy rely heavily on contact tracers. Gov. Andrew Cuomo said late last month that the state would need “an army” of people to find anyone who was close to a patient with a confirmed case of the novel coronavirus.

In Monroe County, more than 600 people have signed up to volunteer as contact tracers, said the man leading their training, public health department emergency preparedness specialist Aaron Cignarale.

Common Ground Health, a Rochester nonprofit organization, began screening people for COVID-19 symptoms at free clinics around the city on Saturday.

The organization stressed that the screenings are not coronavirus tests. Rather, they’re meant to detect early signs of COVID-19 in populations where the disease is taking the greatest toll.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Monroe County public health department reported Saturday that four more people died of COVID-19 in the county, bringing the total death toll to 171.

The number of people in hospitals for COVID-19 treatment held steady at 119 after increasing for six straight days.

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