Michigan chief medical executive warns of possible ‘second wave’ of coronavirus pandemic

More than 120 outbreaks reported since Oct. 8, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun says

Michigan health officials warn 'second wave' of coronavirus may be close

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan’s chief medical executive, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, and other health officials are sending a message to Michiganders, saying it’s possible the state is entering the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

“In many places across the state the cases are the highest they’ve been throughout the entire pandemic,” Khaldun said.

“In over the next several weeks, it is possible we will see deaths increasing as people fight for their lives in the hospitals,” Khaldun added.

Khaldun said there have been more than 120 new outbreaks since Oct, 8, concentrated in long term care, nursing homes and schools.

“Some of the biggest sources of these outbreaks are people not paying attention to social distancing, mask wearing, and they’re letting their guard down,” said Dr. Frank McGeorge.

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Michigan has topped 137,000. More than 6,900 people have died, while more than 104,000 have recovered. For the first time since late July, Michigan’s risk level for an outbreak was upgraded from medium to high.

“Hospitalizations are now approaching troubling levels that we saw this summer. In the past few weeks, the number of Michigan residents admitted with COVID-19 to our member hospitals throughout the state risen by more than 80 percent,” said Brian Peters, CEO of Michigan Health and Hospital Association

As temperatures drop and social gatherings head indoors, health officials are urging people to keep their guard up.

“For all Michiganders who want to show their thanks to the heroes working in the hospitals, this is your real opportunity. Say, ‘Thanks’ by wearing a mask,” Peters said.

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Priya joined WDIV-Local 4 in 2013 as a reporter and fill-in anchor. Education: B.A. in Communications/Post Grad in Advanced Journalism