GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Michigan has reported 1,992 more confirmed cases of coronavirus and 99 additional related deaths.
Of the deaths announced Tuesday, 32 were discovered when public health workers went through the state’s death certificate database to find any that had not already been reported to the state. These checks happen three times per week.
In all, Michigan has now counted 867,341 confirmed cases of the virus since it was first detected here in March 2020 and 18,338 related deaths.
On Monday, labs tested 19,970 samples for the virus and 1,672 were positive, a rate of 8.37%. The number of positive tests is not the same as the number of new cases because people may be tested more than once. Additionally, testing numbers are from a single calendar date, while the number of new cases lists the increase since the last time the state compiled the data; these two time frames do not match up precisely.
While virus numbers are still high, Michigan continues to see key metrics improve. The average test positivity rate has been declining since early April, case rates for a month and the hospital inpatient census for three weeks. The rate of daily deaths, a lagging metric, is no longer climbing and has been level for the last few weeks.
Also good news: Michigan has reached its first vaccination benchmark tied to the loosening of state restrictions. More than 55% of people age 16 and up have received at least one dose, which means that as of May 24, all sectors may return to in-person work.
Visiting the Kalamazoo area Tuesday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer encouraged people to keep getting vaccinated. She said the state is looking into whether it can offer incentives, though she indicated it was more likely to rely on partnering with local leaders and employers to urge people to get their shots.
She added that health care providers are gearing up to start giving the Pfizer vaccine to kids as young as 12 after the federal government said Monday it was OK for them, though she said it may be just a few more days until some final guidelines are released.
For now, the percentages used in the state benchmarks will keep being calculated only including people age 16 and up.