Nine counties in Michigan, including three large counties, continue to have COVID levels above the CDC mask-recommended level.

On Thursday, August 25, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that nine counties in Michigan are in the higher COVID-19 community category. The CDC uses these calculations to categorize counties as low, medium, or high in terms of COVID risk.
 
Three counties in southeastern Michigan (Wayne, Washtenaw, and Macomb), two in northern Lower Michigan (Mason and Crawford), and four in upstate Michigan have high levels (Chippewa, Luce, Delta, and Ontario).
 
When counties have high levels (orange), the CDC recommends that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear NIOSH N95 face masks indoors and in public places.
 

People who are symptomatic, have tested positive, or have had contact with COVID-19 patients, regardless of where they live, should wear N95 masks, according to the CDC.

 
Michigan has 57 medium (yellow) counties and 17 low (green) counties, according to the CDC.
 
Michigan’s southern neighbors are struggling. Ohio, in particular, has no low-grade counties and the majority of its counties are high-grade.
 
Following the Omicron surge in February, the CDC relaxed its mask guidelines, shifting from viewing cases and positive tests to viewing cases and hospitalizations. The goal is to prevent serious illness and relieve hospital pressure.
 
The CDC examined three factors for each county at the community level: the percentage of staffed hospital beds occupied by COVID patients, the number of COVID hospitalizations per capita, and the number of COVID cases per capita.
 
When there are 200 or more new cases per 100,000 people in the previous week, and (a) more than 10 new COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 people, or (b) at least 10% of people are hospitalized, the county has a high level of COVID patients occupying beds.

 

Even counties with few cases, according to the CDC’s formula, can have high levels if hospitalizations are particularly high.

 

(Because not every county has a hospital, each county is assigned a health service area, which is a geographical area with at least one hospital.) Counties are given indicators calculated for the entire area and weighted according to population.)
 

Here is more information on the most recent COVID trends in Michigan.

 
Over the last week, Michigan has reported 2,298 new cases per day.
 
Michigan has reported 2,298 confirmed COVID cases per day over the last week. This is comparable to recent weeks, when Michigan averaged 2,359 cases per day over the previous two weeks.
 
This week, Michigan has reported 475 “probable” COVID cases per day.
 
When the NAAT/RT-PCR test results are positive, the case is considered “confirmed.” When there is a reported antigen (rapid) test or when someone has symptoms and has been in contact with a COVID-19 patient, the case is considered “probable.”
 
Except for the original graph (calculated using the CDC case), all graphs in this story are based solely on “confirmed” numbers.
 
COVID cases are reported once a week by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. This week, the department announced 19,414 confirmed and probable cases.
 
Michigan has reported 2.4 million confirmed COVID cases and over 366,000 probable cases since the outbreak began.
 
The graph below depicts the 7-day average of newly confirmed COVID cases over the course of the pandemic.
 
Michigan ranks 19th in the United States in terms of new cases per capita.
 
According to the New York Times, Michigan was ranked 19th out of 50 states in terms of coronavirus cases per capita this week.
 
Tennessee, Alaska, Kentucky, Alabama, and West Virginia had the highest rates. The states with the lowest rates of novel coronavirus infection were Nevada, New Hampshire, Colorado, Vermont, and Utah.
 
This week, Michigan ranked 23rd in terms of COVID hospitalizations per capita. This week, Michigan had the seventh highest number of COVID deaths per capita.
 
Michigan’s 50 counties with the highest risk of cases
 
The 50 counties with the highest case risk are listed below (level E).
 
For COVID cases, MDHHS has five risk levels:
 
 
Iron, Ontonagon, Saginaw, Wayne, Mason, and Macomb counties had the most cases per capita this week.
 
This week, there are no Class A or B counties. This week’s C-rated counties are all in northeastern Lower Michigan: Alcona, Presque Isle, Mont Moranci, Alpina, and Oscoda.
 
The state’s six risk assessment levels, from A to E, are shaded on the map below. This is based on the number of new cases reported per million people per day between August 17 and August 23.
 
The arrows in each county indicate whether the number of new cases is higher or lower this week compared to the previous week. To view the underlying data, move the cursor over a county.
 
The total number of COVID cases does not provide the full picture. Because home tests were not reported, they were excluded from the data. That is why it is essential to examine the positive percentage of reported tests, as well as hospitalization and death data.
 

The positive rate was 20% on average.

 
On Monday, August 22, approximately 20 out of every 100 COVID tests reported to the state were positive.
 
In comparison to the previous week, the positive rate ranged between 19 and 22 percent this week.
 
When the positive rate exceeds 5%, the World Health Organization considers there to be significant community transmission.
 
In January, Michigan’s unemployment rate reached 35%. It dropped as low as 2% in early March before rising again.
 
Where is the highest COVID prevalence? Hillsdale, Algiers, St. Joseph, Luce, Shavassy, and Eaton counties all have tax rates of 30% or higher.
 
This week, Baraga was the only county with less than 5%.
 
In the table below, you can see the percentage of positives for all 83 counties over the last two weeks.
 
 
 
 

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