Advance Notice: Briefs

Health officials worry that COVID cases are climbing, even as state reports 0 deaths Wednesday

By: - March 17, 2021 3:27 pm

DHHS COVID-19 data, March 17, 2021

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Wednesday that a total of 615,792 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 15,810 have died from the virus — an additional 3,164 cases since Tuesday.

No new COVID-19 related deaths were reported Wednesday — the first time since Aug. 7. 

DHHS also reports that an additional 64,487 Michiganders have been identified as “probable” cases for COVID-19, as well as 999 probable deaths. The department began tracking probable cases on April 5. 

Combining the state’s confirmed positive cases with probable cases brings the total up to 680,279 statewide cases and 16,809 deaths.

The state reports that 2.1 Michiganders have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, totaling about 26% of the state’s population 16 and up. About 3.1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered; however two of the approved vaccines require two doses.

DHHS COVID-19 data, March 17, 2021

According to a Wednesday COVID-19 data update from Sarah Lyon-Callo, director of the DHHS Bureau of Epidemiology and Population Health, Michigan has the ninth-highest number of cases and the 10-highest case rate in the U.S. in the last seven days. 

Michigan has the 24th highest number of COVID-19 related deaths in the country, but there is a lag between cases and deaths.

The state’s hospitalization rate is also increasing from recent weeks. Hospitalizations are up 14% since last week, and this is the third consecutive week the state has seen an increase. The report states that 4.4% of available beds in Michigan are filled by COVID-19 patients.

The virus has been detected in all of Michigan’s 83 counties. The state’s COVID-19 fatality rate is at 2.6%. 

The first two cases of COVID-19 were reported in the state on March 10, 2020. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency that day.

Johns Hopkins University reports that there are about 121 million confirmed cases worldwide and 2.7 million deaths. The United States makes up a significant portion of those, as more than 29.6 million confirmed cases and 537,527 deaths have been recorded nationally.

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Allison R. Donahue
Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue covers education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.

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