Michigan adds 10,474 cases, 78 deaths from COVID-19 over last week

Sarah Rahal
The Detroit News

Michigan added 10,474 cases of COVID and 78 deaths from the virus on Wednesday, including totals from the previous six days.

The state reported an average of about 1,496 cases per day over the five days, an increase from 1,104 cases per day last week.

Wednesday's additions bring the state's overall total to 2,411,464 cases and 35,935 deaths since the virus was first detected here in March 2020.

Hospitalization rates in Michigan increased for the first time this week after declining for nearly three months. This week's additions are an increase from last week when the state added 7,725 cases and 81 deaths from the virus.

Between April 4-10, about 4.8% of Michigan's COVID-19 tests returned positive, compared to 5% the week prior. There is an average of 7,000 weekly cases in the state.

The latest figures come as the state and several Michigan counties have relaxed regulations to stem the spread of the virus.

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On Monday, the state reported 432 adults and 13 pediatric patients were hospitalized with confirmed infections and 77% of the state's inpatient hospital beds were occupied. 

It's a steep decline from records set on Jan. 10, when 4,580 adults were hospitalized with COVID-19. 

About 3% of the state's hospital beds were filled with COVID-19 patients and there were an average of 872 emergency room visits related to COVID-19 per day in the state as of Monday. That compares to 24% of hospital beds being full and 2,889 daily emergency room visits due to the virus in the first week of January.

However, six Michigan counties remain at a "high" level for the increased burden on health care or severe disease: Alcona, Alpena, Montmorency, Presque Isle, St. Clair and Sanilac, according to the state health department.

Case counts continue to drop from early January when the state set a new high mark with more than 20,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 per day.

Coming off the highest case numbers of the entire pandemic, all of Michigan's regions are experiencing declines in case rates and hospitalizations, the state health department noted earlier this month.

In Michigan, variants of the virus have moved at a high rate, proving more contagious than past variants and infecting both unvaccinated and vaccinated residents.

A new iteration of the omicron variant, BA.2, is on its way to becoming dominant across Michigan and the country, but experts say another surge of cases is unlikely — and at least two top scientists told The Detroit News that the pandemic may be nearly finished in the United States.

The Biden administration will extend for two weeks the nationwide mask requirement for public transit as it monitors an uptick in COVID-19 cases, the Associated Press reported Wednesday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was set to extend the order, which was to expire on Monday, by two weeks to monitor for any observable increase in severe virus outcomes as cases rise in parts of the country. The move was being made out of an abundance of caution, the person said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to preview the CDC’s action.

The administration had been hoping to roll out a more flexible masking strategy this week that would have replaced the nationwide requirement.

Last week, Philadephia became the first major city to reinstate indoor mask mandates as cases rose more than 50% higher than 10 days prior. The city is now averaging 142 cases per day.

► For subscribers: As 'stealth' omicron spreads in Michigan, experts remain hopeful pandemic is nearing end

In Michigan, residents ages 30 to 39 currently have the highest case rate of any age group.

As of Monday, 51 new outbreaks were reported over the prior week. The majority, 35 outbreaks, were in long-term care facilities and senior assisted living centers and eight outbreaks were in K-12 schools. The state is tracking 121 ongoing outbreak cases.

About 65%, or 6.5 million, state residents have received their first doses of a vaccine, and 59% are fully vaccinated. More than 231,000 children ages 5 to 11 in Michigan, or 28%, have received their first dose of the vaccine.

More than 3.1 million, or 36.5% of the eligible population, have received a vaccine booster in Michigan and 5.2 million are fully vaccinated.

srahal@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @SarahRahal_