DETROIT – For the past three days, there have been massive crowds protesting police brutality in the streets of Detroit. Health experts fear those crowds will further spread the coronavirus (COVID-19) because people are standing too close together, and many aren’t wearing masks.
UPDATE -- June 1, 2020: Michigan coronavirus cases up to 57,532; Death toll now at 5,516
On Monday afternoon, state officials announced 135 new confirmed cases and 25 additional deaths as a result of the coronavirus in Michigan.
Every day at 2 p.m., the Detroit Health Department posts the city’s specific numbers. Lately, despite a few small spikes, the cases have trended downward.
After three days of close, person-to-person contact during protests, health officials worry about what will happen to the trend in 12-14 days -- the incubation period for the virus.
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“My fear is we’re going to have another spike,” said Denise Fair, the chief public health officer for the Detroit Health Department. “You can be extremely healthy and still be a carrier.”
Fair said the protests concerned her because people were standing shoulder-to-shoulder all across the country.
She said it was shocking to see so many people without masks shouting and chanting. Wearing a mask is only a piece of the coronavirus prevention puzzle and should be coupled with social distancing, hand washing and avoiding the entry points of the mouth, nose and eyes with your fingers.