GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan has reported 739 more confirmed cases of coronavirus and 66 more deaths, pushing the total tally of COVID-19-associated deaths in the state since the start of the pandemic above 19,000.
The Tuesday update from the state includes 31 deaths discovered during a three-times-per week review of death certificates to identify any that had not already been reported to the state.
In all, Michigan has now counted 885,319 confirmed cases of the virus since it was first detected here more than 14 months ago and 19,019 related deaths.
On Monday, labs tested 15,849 samples for the virus and 796 were positive, a percentage of 5.02%. 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 reported four more deaths for a total of 775 and 93 more cases for a total of 67,757 since the start of the pandemic.
Several other West Michigan counties also reported deaths:
- Allegan County: One more death for 119 total; 9,892 total confirmed cases since March 2020.
- Berrien County: One more death for 264 total; 13,779 total cases.
- Calhoun County: One more death for 278 total; 12,226 total cases.
- Kalamazoo County: Two more deaths for 352 total; 20,038 total cases.
- Muskegon County: Three more deaths for 345 total; 15,445 total cases.
- Van Buren County: Two more deaths for 115 total; 6,592 total cases.
Wayne County, hit hardest by the virus, reported 15 more deaths for a total of 4,684 and 105 more cases for a total of 151,360. Neighboring Oakland County has had 101,209 confirmed cases (83 more than the previous day) and 2,215 deaths (six more). Macomb County has had 91,214 cases (62 more) and 2,288 deaths (three more).
The state’s key virus metrics have been showing sustained improvements, with the seven-day average of the positive test rate now 6.5%, the lowest it has been since March 16 and only a little more than twice the 3% threshold that public health officials say shows spread is controlled. The case rate has been dropping for more than six weeks. The count of adults in the hospital confirmed to have the virus has dropped every day for five weeks. The death rate has been showing declines for the past few weeks.
More than 8.1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in Michigan. Fifty-eight percent of residents over the age of 16 and about 53% of residents age 12 and up have received at least one dose.
As the vaccination push continues but demand drops off, the state is launching a text message program to encourage people to get their shot. Beginning Wednesday, texts will start going to to 1 million people statewide, with a focus in high-vulnerability communities and those with a low vaccination rate.
The messages will be labeled as from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. They’ll ask people about whether they’ve been vaccinated and direct them to resources about getting the shots. If you get one but are already vaccinated, you can opt out by replying “STOP.”
Family Health Center in Kalamazoo held a campaign called “A Thousand Shots of Love,” aiming to give 1,000 people their first dose at a no-appointment drive-thru clinic Tuesday. That was scheduled to run through 6 p.m. at Kalamazoo Regional Education Services Agency headquarters, 1819 E. Milham Ave., in Portage. If you want to register, you can call 269.488.0804.
The Barry-Eaton District Health Department is hosting a community clinic from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. June 2 at the Freeport Community Center. The single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be offered to those 18 and older. Health officials would prefer that you register online or by calling 269.945.9516, but you can also walk in.