43 deaths as Michigan coronvirus tally nears 2,300


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The record of confirmed coronavirus cases in Michigan increased by about 500 Tuesday and the number of deaths jumped to 43.

The tests run Tuesday, the results of which were released Wednesday afternoon, brought the state’s total number of confirmed cases to 2,295.

The majority of the deaths have happened metro Detroit: 21 were in Wayne County (including the city of Detroit), 10 were in Oakland County and seven were in Macomb County. Three were in Washtenaw County, and Livingston and Kent counties have seen one death each.

Metro Detroit also has the largest concentration of confirmed cases:

  • Wayne County (including Detroit): 1,122
  • Oakland County: 543
  • Macomb County: 281

Washtenaw County has 72 cases. Kent County’s number of confirmed cases hit 36 with Tuesday’s tests and Ottawa County’s reached 16.

Also Wednesday, the Van Buren/Cass District Health Department said it was notified by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Tuesday of the positive case. The patient is a woman in her 60s who is in stable condition and has been self-isolating at her home in Van Buren County.

According to data compiled by NBC News from both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state officials, Michigan has the sixth highest number of deaths linked to coronavirus in the country and the fifth highest number of confirmed cases.

Health officials have noted that the number of test kits available is limited. Not everyone displaying symptoms will be tested. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan’s chief medical executive, said Monday that not enough tests have been conducted to get a clear scope of the spread of the illness.

Target 8 investigator Ken Kolker waited more than a week for results after he was tested for coronavirus. On Wednesday, they came back negative, but his doctor thinks that may be wrong. He was tested again and told he should learn the results Thursday.

COVID-19 presents with a fever, cough and shortness of breath. For most who contract it, symptoms are mild. The people most at risk to develop severe complications are the elderly and those with preexisting health problems.

If you think you have coronavirus, call your health care provider. Unless you are in need of emergency help, do not go to the emergency room. Get advice from a doctor over the phone or a televisit and they will direct you on how to get tested.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has ordered Michigan residents to stay at home unless they must leave to go grocery shopping or unless they are an essential service worker. If you’re sick, you shouldn’t leave the house at all. Restaurants are allowed only to offer drive-thru, carry-out or delivery. The goal is to keep the number of severe cases small enough that hospitals can handle them.

Other than following social distancing guidelines, you should keep following common-sense health practices, like washing your hands frequently for 20 seconds with soap and warm water, coughing into your arm or a tissue rather than your hands and avoiding touching your face with unwashed hands.

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