Michigan adds 10,428 COVID-19 cases, 98 more deaths

Sarah Rahal
The Detroit News
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Michigan added 10,428 COVID-19 cases and 98 deaths linked to the virus on Monday, including those reported on Sunday.

The latest additions bring the state's total of confirmed cases to 360,449 and deaths to 9,134 since the virus was first detected in Michigan in March, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Michigan has the fifth-highest number of cases and the fourth-highest number of deaths in the nation in the last seven days, according to the CDC's COVID data tracker.

Triumph Church on Joy Road in Detroit is one of a dozen sites to offer free testing through MDHHS's Neighborhood program.

It also has the seventh-highest hospitalization rate and sixth-highest number of COVID patients in the ICU, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.

More than 17.5% of available inpatient beds are filled with COVID patients and state trends for hospitalizations for COVID continue to increase for the past six weeks, according to health department data.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced wide-ranging new restrictions to combat what she described as the "worst moment" yet in the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services ordered a temporary pause on in-person learning for high schools and colleges, suspension of in-person dining at restaurants and bars, and the closure of bowling alleys, movie theaters and casinos.

Under the order, effective through Dec. 8, indoor residential gatherings are limited to two households at any one time.

Child care centers, hair salons, retail shops and preschool through eighth-grade schools are still allowed to operate. Parks and outdoor recreation areas will continue to be open, and gatherings of up to 25 people can take place at funerals. Restaurants can offer take-out and outdoor dining, while gyms and pools can be open for individual exercise.

The state set a new record for daily COVID-19 cases with 9,779 cases reported on Nov. 20.

Michigan’s daily record for deaths was reached on April 16 with 164.

Deaths stayed near single digits each day from July through September but spiked again with 10 to 18 per day in early October. Deaths have been trending upward in November, with 43 on Nov. 3, 65 on Nov. 7, 84 on Nov. 10, 118 on Nov. 13 and 145 Tuesday.

The surge in cases comes as drugmakers are reporting encouraging results in trials of vaccines.

Moderna Inc. said it would ask U.S. and European regulators Monday to allow emergency use of its COVID-19 vaccine as new study results confirm the shots offer strong protection.

AstraZeneca said that late-stage trials showed its coronavirus vaccine was up to 90% effective, giving public health officials hope they may soon have access to a vaccine that is cheaper and easier to distribute than some of its rivals.

Pending regulatory approval, Michigan is slated to receive several hundred thousand doses of a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine that will ship before the end of the year, health officials said Wednesday.

Shipments could be received by Henry Ford as early as Dec. 12, hospital officials said. Five of its hospitals are preparing to distribute COVID-19 vaccines in mid-December.

The state department is also tracking wastewater surveillance being conducted in 37 counties throughout Michigan, in both the upper and lower peninsulas. There are approximately 270 testing sites, which include wastewater treatment plants and congregate facilities, such as jails, long-term care centers, K-12 schools, universities, child care facilities and group homes.

The virus can be detected in wastewater for up to seven days. Officials believe monitoring wastewater can provide an early indication for the presence of the disease in the community before critical illnesses occur.

Michigan added 35 new school outbreaks on Monday, adding to a list of more than 200 ongoing outbreaks reported in the last two weeks.

About 3,686 adults were hospitalized statewide with COVID-19 and another 382 with suspected cases on Friday, compared with 999 COVID inpatients on Oct. 13, according to state data.

Across the state, Michigan has just under 24,000 hospital inpatient beds. More than 88%, or 21,220, of those beds were filled as of Friday, according to data reported to the state by 88% of hospital systems. Intensive care beds were at 79% capacity, according to the reporting hospitals.

Unlike the spring surge, which was concentrated in southeast Michigan, this escalation is spread across the state. About 12.5% of COVID tests run in the state are coming back positive. A positivity rate above 3% is concerning to public health officials.

"The situation has never been more dire," Whitmer said as she announced new restrictions in November. "We are at the precipice, and we need to take some action."

srahal@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @SarahRahal_

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