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Michigan COVID-19 cases exceed 15,700 with 617 deaths

Craig Mauger
The Detroit News

Lansing — Michigan now has more than 15,700 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as the number of deaths reported in Detroit spiked Sunday.

The total number of cases in Michigan climbed to 15,718 while the number of deaths statewide jumped by 77 to 617, according to data released by the Department of Health and Human Services. Of those 77 new deaths, 27 were in Detroit, the largest 24-hour increase in deaths in the city yet, according to the state's daily figures.

The previous high was 23 new deaths reported in state data released Tuesday. Wayne County as a whole how has 7,518 confirmed coronavirus cases, about 48% of the statewide total, and 293 deaths, 47% of the statewide deaths. The county has about 17% of the state's population.

Members of the Michigan National Guard built bed frames for a  temporary hospital for patients with coronavirus at the TCF Center in Detroit on Saturday, April 4, 2020. 
Max Ortiz, The Detroit News

The new numbers came about five hours after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said the virus was growing "exponentially" in Michigan. On Saturday, Michigan moved into third place nationally for confirmed cases of COVID-19. Michigan moved ahead of California, which has about four times the population Michigan has. Michigan is now behind only New York and New Jersey.

"We are seeing that it doesn’t discriminate based on city line, state line, party line," Whitmer said during an appearance on "Fox News Sunday." "This is something that is aggressively growing in all age groups, all across our most populous part of the state."

About 40% of Michigan's population resides in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. But those three counties continue to be home to  80% of the state's coronavirus cases.

The Detroit Health Department reported its own figures Sunday, which showed 588 new cases of COVID-19 and 38 additional deaths. Because of the timing of the reports and differing reporting practices, the city and state numbers often feature slight differences.

As of Sunday, 71 of Michigan's 83 counties had at least one confirmed COVID-19 case, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. As of a week ago, 58 counties had a case.

Laboratories have tested at least 40,581 specimen in the state for COVID-19, according to numbers released Saturday. Of those, 10,435 tested positive. But the testing figures reported by the health department aren't comprehensive.

cmauger@detroitnews.com