GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan on Saturday announced 4,698 more confirmed cases of coronavirus and 121 additional related deaths. In all, Michigan has now had 819,320 total cases since the virus was first detected the state in March 2020 and 17,289 related deaths.
Of the deaths announced Saturday, 91 were found during a review of death certificates to find any that had not already been reported to the state. Such checks happen three times per week.
The state estimates 626,254 patients have recovered. That figure includes everyone still alive 30 days after developing symptoms but does not account for the “long-haulers” who suffer symptoms, including loss of smell and taste, trouble breathing and brain fog, for months after contracting the virus.
On Friday, labs tested 49,236 samples for the virus and 5,387 were positive, a rate of 10.94%. The number of positive tests is not the same as the number of new cases because people may be tested more than once. Additionally, testing numbers are from a single calendar date, while the number of new cases lists the increase since the last time the state compiled the data; these two time frames do not match up precisely.
Kent County on Friday reported 7 more deaths, bringing its total to 718, and confirmed 360 more cases for a total of 62,248.
Deaths were also added in several other West Michigan counties:
- Barry County: Two more deaths for 56 total; 4,748 total confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic.
- Berrien County: One more deaths for 246 total; 12,981 total cases.
- Branch County: Two more deaths for 90 total; 4,072 total cases.
- Calhoun County: One more deaths for 249 total; 11,159 total cases.
- Kalamazoo County: Four more deaths for 311 total; 18,271 total cases.
- Montcalm County: Two more deaths for 95 total; 4,704 total cases.
- Muskegon County: Three more deaths for 313 total; 13,313 total cases.
- Newaygo County: One more deaths for 56 total; 3,978 total cases.
- Van Buren County: One more deaths for 98 total; 6,129 total cases.
Wayne County, which has been hit hardest by the virus over the course of the pandemic and which is again posting some of the highest figures, confirmed 1,002 cases, bringing its total to 139,027 since the start of the pandemic, and reported 22 more deaths for a total of 4,273. Neighboring Oakland County has had 94,073 confirmed cases (594 more than the previous day) and 2047 deaths (10 more). Macomb County has had 84,949 cases (536 more) and 2,062 deaths (21 more).
Some 6.3 million vaccine doses have been administered in Michigan. Around 47% of the state’s population over the age of 16 has received at least one shot and more than a third of that population has finished their doses.
An increasing impediment to the vaccine rollout is hesitancy among people who are worried about how quick the vaccine came out, demographics who have a historical mistrust of medicine and those who oppose vaccines in general. Health officials are working to put information about the vaccines in front of people to quell their fears and launch more walk-in clinics to reach those who simply haven’t gotten around to scheduling an appointment.
While Michigan is still in a worst-in-the-nation surge, metrics are starting to show improvements: the average case and positivity rates are on the downtrend and hospitalizations were looking slightly better toward the end of the week. The rate of daily deaths, a lagging metric, is still growing and the seven-day average is now above 50.
In an effort to limit spread from other places, the state on Friday starting launching rapid testing sites at welcome centers and more will open in coming days, including along I-94 at New Buffalo on Monday. You can find more information about testing sites on the state’s website.