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.


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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Of the 33 people hospitalized for COVID-19 treatment in Monroe County, 22 of them are in an intensive care unit, according to data from the county public health department.

ICUs treat the most severe cases of the disease, providing oxygen through ventilators and monitoring a range of data that a typical hospital floor cannot track.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Monroe County health department said Sunday that a sixth person had died of COVID-19 in the county as 21 new cases were confirmed over the last 24 hours.

Five of those new cases are in people in their 20s.

The Monroe County public health department confirmed 24 new cases of COVID-19 overnight, officials said in a Saturday morning statement.

Michael Krinke/iStockphoto.com/NPR

As the death toll from COVID-19 climbs in Monroe County -- three people have died since Monday, but officials say the rate is likely to accelerate as the disease spreads -- local doctors have begun to understand more about how to treat patients who develop severe symptoms.

The virus that causes the disease is only about 4 months old, and any hands-on experience treating it locally has only developed over the last two weeks since the first case was identified in Monroe County.

Screenshot from Monroe County news briefing

Monroe County and hospital system officials detailed their plans Friday morning for what they will do if an influx of COVID-19 patients overwhelms local hospital capacity.

County Executive Adam Bello said the "surge capacity" plan would add more than 2,000 hospital beds, which would potentially double the number currently available.

Golisano Children's Hospital staff

As hospitals work to make room for an anticipated wave of COVID-19 patients in the coming weeks, some parts of their operations have become eerily empty.

In the pediatric emergency department at Golisano Children’s Hospital, there’s still a dull hum of machinery under the intermittent beeps of monitors. But Dr. Elizabeth Murray says it’s a far cry from the usual cacophony.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A boy under the age of 10 was among the six newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported by the Monroe County health department Thursday afternoon.

A man in his 90s was also among the people diagnosed with the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

The county also reported another death from the disease.

“Regretfully, we have received notification that a fourth death related to COVID-19 occurred today in Monroe County," public health commissioner Dr. Michael Mendoza said in a statement.

Monroe County Department of Public Health

Two people who were diagnosed with COVID-19 and isolated to prevent the spread of the disease have gotten better and been released from isolation, the Monroe County Health Department said Wednesday morning.

Monroe County Executive's Office

A brief infusion of donations to the United Way will not allow it to sustain the operations of local nonprofit organizations for very long, the group’s president and CEO said Tuesday.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A third person has died of COVID-19 in Monroe County, the county health department said Tuesday morning.

The patient was being treated at Strong Memorial Hospital.

"Please keep the individual’s loved ones in your thoughts and prayers today, as well as the healthcare professionals who are on the frontlines," county health commissioner Dr. Michael Mendoza said in a statement.

This was the second day in a row that the county reported a death from COVID-19.

The county also confirmed 14 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the local total to 95 known cases.