Federal health officials on Tuesday urged Americans in areas of the country with the highest surges in COVID-19 infections to once again wear masks when they are in public, indoor settings — even if they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
As college campuses across Michigan are less than a month away from opening up to students for the fall semester, the state reports only 39.8% of residents 20 to 29 years old have been inoculated with at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Those aged 16 to 19 have a slightly higher rate of 40.3%.
This week, just three states with lower vaccination rates — Florida, Texas and Missouri — accounted for 40% of all cases nationwide. One in five cases occurred in Florida alone.
Columnist Trish Zornio writes, “If we don’t act now, masks could become a long-term fashion accessory. In the past 14 days, the United States has seen tremendous growth in COVID-19 cases again. This has included a 36% increase in hospitalizations and a 26% increase in deaths. With the more transmissible delta variant, infection rates are likely to keep rising quickly. As expected, over 99% of deaths and 97% of hospitalizations were in unvaccinated people. If you’re vaccinated, it doesn’t affect you then, right? Wrong.”
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Tuesday that a total of 898,626 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 19,862 have died from the virus — an additional 1,028 cases and 14 deaths since Friday.
The Delta variant is a mutant strain of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Early estimates suggest the new strain may be 35% to 60% more transmissible than the alpha variant, another mutated strain that was already 43% to 90% more transmissible than the original.
While the Michigan Department of Corrections encourages its employees to get vaccinated, staff are not required to be vaccinated, nor are they required to tell their employer if they have. Specifically, just 1,300 DOC staffers out of nearly 12,000 are known by the state to be vaccinated, despite being eligible for the vaccine since late December.
After months of working from home, employees at Glen Oaks Community College will return to the office. Glen Oaks President Dr. David H. Devier announced the plans in an email to employees Tuesday.
Michigan Advance’s Susan J. Demas writes, “At this point, after we’ve watched so much senseless death and the explicit right-wing tactic of turning public health into a gun-toting culture war, it’s OK for those who have tried to be good citizens to be angry.”
Todd A. Heywood writes, “Despite all the hoopla and PR, one group of Americans continues to get a confusing message about when and whether to take the vaccine: the immunocompromised community. But federal guidance on vaccination for this group is complicated. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website recommends vaccination, but then refers individuals to their primary care doctors to discuss their specific case. Why?”
Anna Gustafson writes, “But it is that absence that has been so vital this year; it is that emptiness that has paved the way for life. Do not mistake this silence for a lack of numbers: Those of us who have followed the COVID-19 health orders coming from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) fill our state. And, now, after more than a year of listening to the scientists, wearing our masks and social distancing, life is moving towards something almost jarringly familiar, towards something that is beginning to remind us of the lives we were living some 14 months ago.”
The University of Michigan health system is joining a growing number of major medical institutions opening clinics specifically aimed at treating and studying patients with lingering, serious symptoms from a brush with COVID-19. That could be as many as 10% of people who caught the coronavirus, one of the nation’s chief doctors recently testified.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Monday that a total of 849,420 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 17,771 have died from the virus — an additional 5,035 cases and 29 deaths since Saturday.
While the pandemic continues to worsen here in Michigan, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday urged Michiganders who contract COVID-19 and have pre-existing conditions to consider an antibody treatment.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Wednesday that a total of 764,519 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 16,619 have died from the virus — an additional 7,955 cases and 33 deaths since Tuesday.
As Michigan leads the nation in the number of cases and the highest rates of hospitalizations for COVID-19, the head of the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recommending new health restrictions.
The U.S. Department of Education (USED) on Tuesday denied Michigan’s request to waive the federal requirement to administer the state’s standardized tests during the pandemic.
Despite Michigan’s COVID case rate, mortality rate and hospitalizations increasing in every region of the state, state health officials remain hesitant to say whether business closures or stricter restrictions are on the horizon.