Detroit’s number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases rises to 2,483 after city accelerates testing

Death toll is 82

Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19, formerly known as 2019-nCoV. (CDC/ Hannah A Bullock; Azaibi Tamin)

DETROIT – The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Detroit rose to 2,483 Wednesday, and the city’s death toll is now 82.

April 1 update -- Michigan COVID-19 cases up to 9,334; Death toll rises to 337

Health officials said the cases increased by 400 since Tuesday, and nine more deaths were reported Wednesday.

Mayor Mike Duggan credits the increase in numbers to the amount of testing the city has been doing. A drive-thru testing site opened last week at the State Fairgrounds on the west side.

READ: Detroit drive-up coronavirus testing: How to get appointment, who’s eligible, details

According to Duggan, 600 people have been tested Wednesday, and 3,000 people are booked to be tested. He said he hopes to be testing 1,000 people a day when 200,000 swabs from the Federal Emergency Management Agency arrive.

He expects the confirmed cases to jump as a result of testing.

“This is a function of our very important testing process,” Duggan said during his daily COVID-19 briefing Wednesday.

The city also upped its testing of first responders. Currently, 91 Detroit Police Department Employees and 17 Detroit Fire Department employees have tested positive.

The DPD has had 120 people return to work over the past few days. As of Wednesday, 525 employees are quarantined. The DFD has 136 members quarantined.

The mayor also noted that the city is working to get transportation that will bring residents to the testing site.

Additionally, Duggan said the city will be the first in the country to use 15-minute testing, thanks to testing equipment that arrived Wednesday. He expects it to be up and running within the next 24 hours.

MORE: What the CDC says you should do if you believe you have coronavirus (COVID-19)

How COVID-19 Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • Spread is possible before people show symptoms. People who are not showing symptoms can still be carrying the virus and can still pass it on to other people.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

Prevention & Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

Click here for more guidelines from the CDC.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

Read more about coronavirus here.