Michigan reports about 1,600 more coronavirus cases over 2 days


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan has announced 1,569 more confirmed cases of coronavirus and 12 more related deaths.

The Monday update from the state, which includes two days’ worth of data, brings the total number of cases to 589,150 since the virus was first detected in Michigan nearly a year ago and the total number of related deaths to 15,534.

On Saturday, labs in Michigan tested 26,125 samples for the virus and 952, or 3.64%, were positive. On Sunday, 21,632 samples were tested and 946 were positive, a rate of 4.37%.

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.

The state identified 29 more outbreaks at K-12 schools, colleges or universities, bringing the total number to 123. The biggest outbreak at a K-12 school is at Lapeer High School, which has 48 cases among students and staff members. Forest Hills Central High School is dealing with an outbreak involving 28 people. Portage Central Elementary, added to the list this week, has an outbreak involving 15 people. Most outbreaks at K-12 schools are fewer than 20 people. The largest outbreaks are a colleges and universities.

Kent County reported one more death for a total of 654. It also confirmed 126 more cases over the two days, bringing its total to 48,888 since the start of the pandemic.

Barry County also reported an additional death, making its total 43. It has had 3,431 total confirmed cases.

Cass County revised its death toll down by one to 59. This has not been uncommon as cases are double-checked and sometimes tied to a different county. It hash ad 3,612 total cases.

Wayne County, hit hardest by the virus, reported one more death for a total of 3,925 and 316 more cases for a total of 94,840. Neighboring Oakland County has had 64,610 cases (149 more than reported Saturday) and 1,888 deaths (no change). Macomb County has had 55,271 cases (157 more) and 1,863 deaths (no change).

While Michigan’s coronavirus metrics are much better than they were during a November surge, the case and positivity rates have recently plateaued after weeks on the decline. Hospitalizations also appear to have leveled off. The rate of deaths, the metric that changes last, is still trending down and is better than it has been since mid-October.

The seven-day average of the positivity rate has been hover around 3.5%, about half a percentage point higher than the threshold that public health look for to show community spread is controlled.

Data compiled by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows Michigan has now recorded more than 420 cases of the more transmissible B.1.1.7 variant.

B.1.1.7 is expected to become the nation’s dominant coronavirus strain by the end of the month, the CDC says. The way to fight it is the same as fighting the current dominant strain: washing your hands frequently, practicing social distancing, wearing a mask around others and registering so you can get vaccinated as soon as it’s your turn.

Health officials have also stressed getting tested for the virus if you’re showing COVID-19 symptoms, may have been exposed or have traveled outside Michigan in the last two weeks.

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