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CDC recommends masks for 14 Michigan counties, up from 8 last week

Michigan has 14 counties at a high COVID-19 community level this week according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC uses community levels to determine COVID risk, placing counties in one of three buckets: low (green), medium (yellow), or high (orange).

The CDC recommends masking indoors in public when counties are at a high community level, regardless of vaccination status. However, people with symptoms, a positive test, or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should wear a mask regardless of where they live, according to the CDC.

The 14 counties at a high this week are: Calhoun, Clare, Clinton, Dickinson, Eaton, Ingham, Ionia, Iron, Lapeer, Macomb, Midland, Schoolcraft, Shiawassee and Washtenaw counties.

Michigan has 34 counties at a medium level and 35 counties at a low COVID-19 community level this week.

Here is the latest map showing the community level for each county in Michigan. Tap or hover over a county to see details.

(Can’t see the map? Click here.)

The CDC considers cases and hospitalizations when determining the risk of COVID for an area. The aim is to prevent serious illnesses and limit the pressure on hospitals.

For community levels, the CDC looks at three factors for each county: the percentage of staffed hospital beds occupied by COVID patients, COVID hospital admissions per capita, and COVID cases per capita.

A county is at a high level when there are 200 or more new cases per 100,000 in the past week and either (a) more than 10 new COVID-19 hospital admissions per 100,000 or (b) when at least 10% of inpatient beds are occupied by COVID patients.

If hospitalizations are particularly high, even a county with low cases may be high, according to the CDC’s formula.

(Not all counties have hospitals, so each is assigned a health service area, a geographic region that contains at least one hospital. Counties are assigned the calculated metrics for the entire area, weighted by the population of each county.)

Learn more about the status of COVID-19 in Michigan.

Michigan reports 2,086 new confirmed cases per day over the past week

Reported COVID cases are up 16.0% from last week as the state saw 2,086 new confirmed cases this week.

Michigan hovered around the 2,000 cases per day mark for most of the summer.

Michigan also reported 539 “probable” cases of COVID per day this week.

Cases are “confirmed” when there is a positive NAAT/RT-PCR test result. Cases are ‘probable’ when there is a reported (rapid) antigen test or someone has symptoms and has been exposed to someone with COVID-19.

All charts in this story except the first (which uses CDC case calculations) are based on “confirmed” numbers only.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services reports COVID cases once a week. The department announced 18,375 confirmed and probable cases this week.

Michigan has reported 2.4 million confirmed cases of COVID and nearly 378,000 probable cases since the start of the pandemic.

The chart below shows the seven-day average of new confirmed COVID cases throughout the pandemic.

(Can’t see the board? Click here.)

Michigan ranks 8th in the United States for new cases per capita

Michigan’s COVID rate was the eighth highest in the United States last week, according to The New York Times.

Michigan had fewer COVID cases than last week, but managed to move up the list of highest COVID rates as 46 of the 50 states saw their rates drop last week.

West Virginia, Kentucky, South Carolina, Alaska, North Carolina and Ohio have had the most COVID cases per capita this week. Nevada, California, Washington, Utah, Montana and Wyoming had the lowest COVID rates.

For COVID hospitalizations, Michigan ranked 14th out of 50 this week. The state also recorded the fourth-highest number of COVID deaths per capita this week.

42 counties have seen the number of cases increase in the past seven days

Of Michigan’s 83 counties, 42 had more cases this week than last week.

Many large counties in Michigan have seen a sharp increase in the number of cases. Ingham County is up 39% from last week, Kalamazoo County is up 34%, Wayne County is up 32%, Oakland County is up 23%, County Washtenaw County jumped 20%, Macomb County grew 19% and Kent County grew 8%.

Consult the database below to search by county and sort by most/least cases. The graph also shows the percentage change from week to week and the seven-day average of cases per capita.

(Don’t see the database? Click here.)

37 Michigan counties most at risk of cases

There are 37 counties at the highest risk level (Level E) for cases, up from 43 counties last week.

The MDHHS has five levels of risk for COVID cases:

  • Level A: 7 to 19 cases per day per million
  • Level B: 20 ​​to 39 cases per day per million
  • Level C: 40 to 69 cases per day per million
  • Level D: 70-149 cases per day per million
  • Level E: 150+ cases per day per million

The counties with the highest COVID rates in Michigan this week were Iron, Dickinson, Washtenaw, Midland, Schoolcraft and Ingham counties.

The lowest COVID rates were in Alcona, Huron, Almost Isle, Leelanau, Antrim and Cheboygan counties.

The map below is shaded by the state’s six risk assessment levels from A to E. This is based on new cases reported per day and per million people from September 7-13.

Arrows on each county indicate whether new cases this week are up or down from the previous week. Place your cursor over a county to see the underlying data. (Tip: drag the map with your cursor to see the whole UP)

(Can’t see the map? Click here.)

The total number of COVID cases does not tell the whole story. Home tests are not reported, so they are not included in the data. This is why it is also essential to examine the percentage of positivity of the tests reported and the data on hospitalizations and deaths.

The average test positivity is 18%

About 18 out of 100 COVID tests reported to the state on Monday, September 12 have come back positive.

The positivity rate hovered between 18% and 19% last week.

The World Health Organization considers substantial-level community transmission when positivity rates are above 5%.

Michigan’s rate peaked at 35% in January. It fell as low as 2% in early March before rising again.

The chart below shows the percentage of reported COVID-19 tests that came back positive throughout the pandemic.

(Can’t see the board? Click here.)

Eaton County had the highest positivity rate of any county in Michigan this week, at 30.5%. Baraga, Keweenaw and Lake counties all had a positivity rate below 5%.

To see the COVID test positivity rate for your county, see the searchable table below.

(Don’t see the database? Click here.)

The interactive map below shows the seven-day average testing rate by county. Place your cursor over a county to see details.

(Can’t see the map? Click here.)

Hospitals treating 1,145 adult patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19

Michigan had 1,145 adults hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID as of Wednesday, September 14. That’s down slightly from 1,172 adult hospitalizations last week.

Prior to this week, Michigan’s COVID hospitalizations had increased in eight of the previous nine weeks.

As of Wednesday, of the 1,145 adults hospitalized with COVID, 148 were in intensive care and 69 were on a ventilator.

There were also 46 children hospitalized with COVID in Michigan on Wednesday.

Michigan reports 21 new COVID deaths per day over the past week

Michigan has averaged 21 COVID deaths per day this week, the highest mark since March.

But there are still far fewer COVID deaths than Michigan had during omicron’s winter peak. Michigan averaged more than 100 COVID deaths per day during parts of January.

Michigan has recorded 34,970 confirmed COVID-19 deaths and 3,347 probable COVID deaths since the pandemic began. In other words, about one in every 287 Michigan residents has died of confirmed COVID.

Below is a graph illustrating the seven-day average of reported deaths throughout the pandemic.

(Can’t see the board? Click here.)

Vaccinations: 63.4% of residents received at least one dose

About 63.4% of Michigan residents have received at least one COVID vaccine, 58.3% have received the full original regimen and 33.9% have been boosted.

The omicron-specific COVID-19 booster is now available in Michigan from Pfizer and Moderna.

The new vaccines are licensed for use as a single booster dose, given at least two months after a previous COVID vaccine. Moderna’s shot is permitted for ages 18 and older, while Pfizer’s is restricted to ages 12 and older.

Below is a vaccination breakdown by age group of Michiganders who have received at least one vaccine (initiated) and those who are “completed”, i.e. two mRNA vaccines or one Johnson vaccine & Johnson, to Wednesday, September 14:

  • 75 years and over: 87.1% insiders; 81.3% complete
  • 65 to 74: 90.4% initiates; 85.4% complete
  • 50 to 64: 76.9% initiated; 72.2% complete
  • 40 to 49: 67.6% initiated; 62.4% complete
  • 30 to 39: 65.9% initiated; 59.6% complete
  • 20 to 29: 55.6% initiated; 49.4% complete
  • 16 to 19: 56.6% initiates; 51.6% complete
  • 12 to 15: 49.8% initiates; 46.1% complete
  • 5 to 11: 30.3% initiates; 27.3% complete
  • Less than 5 years: 6.2% initiated, 1.5% completed

Below is a table that ranks counties from most vaccinated to least vaccinated.

(Can’t see the board? Click here.)

For more statewide data, visit MLive’s coronavirus data page.

To find a testing site near you, visit the state’s online test search, email, or call 888-535-6136 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays. .

If you have questions about COVID-19, please submit them to to consider for future MLive reports.


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