Michigan confirms about 1,200 more coronavirus cases


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan has reported 1,203 more confirmed coronavirus cases and 63 more related deaths.

Of the 63 deaths, 36 were discovered as the state checked death certificates to find any that had not already been reported to the state.

The Tuesday update from the state brings the total number of cases in Michigan to 562,510 since the virus was first detected here in March 2020 and the total number of associated deaths to 14,672.

On Monday, labs in Michigan tested 17,624 samples for the virus — an unusually small number — and 979 came back positive, a rate of 5.67%. 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 confirmed 84 more cases for a total of 46,745 since the start of the outbreak. The number of deaths remained unchanged at 603.

A few other West Michigan counties did report additional deaths:

  • Barry County: One more death for 39 total; 3,259 total confirmed cases since March 2020.
  • Calhoun County: Two more deaths for 206 total; 7,860 total cases.
  • Kalamazoo County: Three more deaths for 276 total; 12,627 total cases.
  • Mecosta County: One more death for 19 total; 1,782 total cases.

Wayne County, where Detroit is, reported 15 more deaths for 3,784 total and confirmed 168 more cases for a total of 90,738 in the last about 11 months. Neighboring Oakland County has had 62,001 confirmed cases (145 more than the previous day) and 1,802 deaths (seven more). Macomb County has had 53,147 cases (95 more) and 1,769 deaths (five more).

Michigan’s virus metrics continue to get better. The case rate is on a steady downward trend and the seven-day average rate of daily positive tests is now about 5.6% — though it is still nearly two times higher than the 3% public health officials look for to show community spread is controlled. The number of COVID-19 patients in the hospital keeps declining. The rate of deaths each day is also showing week-over-week improvements, now better than it has been since early November.

Spectrum Health also announced Tuesday it is opening a new clinic at Blodget Hospital for monoclonal antibody treatments for outpatients in the early stages of COVID-19 with mild to moderate symptoms and a high risk of developing a serious case.

It said it will use Eli Lilly’s Bamlanivimab and Regeneron’s Casirivimab and Imdevimab combination, which have received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat COVID-19.

The Blodgett clinic, which opens Feb. 10, will replace a smaller one that had been running at downtown Grand Rapids Spectrum facilities.

Those who meet the criteria for the clinic can contact Spectrum at 616.391.0351 or by emailing covid19research@spectrumhealth.org.

Vaccines are being administered, though still more slowly than desired. The goal is to regularly give 50,000 shots per day, which the state has so far managed to do only once. Even if it hits that goal, the state will not reach its goal of vaccinating 70% of the population 16 and older for more than six months.

However, the state’s chief medical executive says as many as 80,000 doses could be administered each day if the federal government were to speed up its flow of vaccines in to Michigan.

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