Michigan's COVID-19 death toll hits 4,100 with nearly 44,000 cases

Craig Mauger
The Detroit News
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Lansing — The number of COVID-19 cases in Michigan neared 44,000 Monday with 4,135 deaths linked to the virus, but the number of hospitalized individuals appears to be dropping.

The state added 196 new cases and 86 new deaths in its daily report. However, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services said the new numbers weren't comprehensive because of a "software issue."

The state has now reported 43,950 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus since March 10.

The state's software system malfunctioned Sunday night and "stopped processing messages from COVID-19 testing laboratories," according to a statement from the department.

The new numbers were reported Monday evening. Usually, the numbers come at 3 p.m. each day.

A sign at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing location in Lansing tells drivers to "proceed ahead." No testing appeared to be occurring at the site on Tuesday morning, April 14, 2020.

"The malfunction has been resolved," the department said. "No information was lost and all of the messages were retained. However, processing the backlog of messages will take a significant amount of time."

As of Sunday, Michigan had 43,754  cases and 4,049 deaths linked to it. On Sunday, the state reported 547 new cases and 29 new deaths, which were among the lowest daily totals in recent weeks.

During a press conference Monday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said the state's fight with COVID-19 isn't over.

"If we open up too fast, we’ll have to go through this pain all over again," the governor said.

Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan's chief medical executive, said she was pleased Monday with the state's progress. The numbers of cases, deaths, hospital capacity and testing “are absolutely moving in the right direction," Khaldun said.

"This is not a reason to become complacent," she added.

As of Sunday, the state reported 1,948 COVID-19 inpatients, which is down 42% from the total disclosed two weeks earlier: 3,374.

Southeast Michigan saw its largest surge in cases about a month ago, Khaldun said. But west Michigan case increases are still happening, she said.

Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties are home to 30,549 cases, 69.5% of the statewide total, according to the data. The three counties have experienced 80.5% of the deaths.

As of Monday, 79 of Michigan's 83 counties had at least one confirmed case of COVID-19.

Michigan ranked seventh nationally Monday afternoon for the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases, according to Johns Hopkins University. Michigan was behind New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Illinois, California and Pennsylvania. But Michigan ranked third overall for number of deaths tied to the virus.

As of Friday, 15,659 people in the state have recovered from the disease, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. That number represents people who were still alive 30 days out from their onset of illness.


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