Gov. Tony Evers said he will extend the current public health emergency into January 2021 and reissue his order requiring face masks in pubic spaces fight the spread of COVID-19.

The current public health emergency was declared Sept. 22.

“Back then, our seven-day average of daily new positive cases was around 1,800,” he said. “Unfortunately, things have worsened quickly since then. We’ve now more than tripled our seen-day average, averaging now 6,400 new positive cases per day.”

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases has tripled. There are almost 324,000 positive cases in Wisconsin, and the total number of COVID-19 deaths is 2,741.

The current public health emergency is set to expire Saturday. Evers said Wisconsin cannot afford to have a gap in its mitigation efforts.

Call it what you want – flattening the curve, stopping the spread, staying safer at home – I’m going to call it what it is – saving lives,” Evers said.