'Detroiters responded’: Mayor Duggan credits residents with success in fight against COVID-19 outbreak

COVID-19 numbers falling steadily

Local 4′s Kimberly Gill sat down with Duggan -- at a safe distance -- to talk about the city’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

DETROIT – Local 4′s Kimberly Gill sat down with Duggan -- at a safe distance -- to talk about the city’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

From the onset of the coronavirus outbreak Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan hit the ground running. Mass testing was organized, health officials went into nursing homes and efforts were made to keep city workers as safe as possible on the job.

May 14, 2020 -- Michigan coronavirus (COVID-19) cases up to 49,582; Death toll now at 4,787

Detroit was hit hard in the number of deaths and cases of coronavirus. Now, the city is making national headlines because of how efficiently those numbers have declined.

Duggan contributes that success to the people of the city.

“Detroit was hit harder and faster than any city in the country. Last week of March, the first two weeks of April -- but Detroiters responded like we always respond," Duggan said. "They embraced the social distancing and embraced the wearing of masks and I’ve been really fortunate. A lot of mayors in this country have had to close parks and establish curfews but the people in the city have really been terrific.”

While Detroit is still losing lives to coronavirus -- the numbers are falling steadily. Testing has become more accessible. Duggan announced on Wednesday that anyone age 60 and older who wants a test can get one. The test is free and they don’t need a prescription or symptoms.

MORE: Tracking coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in nursing homes around Metro Detroit

He credits his experience as a hospital CEO for having the know-how and resources to bring more testing to Detroit.

“I was the CEO of the Detroit Medical Center in 2009 where the country prepared for the H1N1 swine flu epidemic -- which turned out to be a lot milder than what was originally predicted. So, when this came about, you know, it was osmething I was familiar with and the most important thing is you can’t stop the spread of a virus if you can’t 'test who’s infectious,” Duggan said.

READ: Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says gatherings of 10 people could be allowed on May 28

Watch the video above for the full report.

About the Authors:

You can watch Kimberly Gill weekdays anchoring Local 4 News at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. and streaming live at 10 p.m. on Local 4+. She's an award-winning journalist who finally called Detroit home in 2014. Kim has won Regional Emmy Awards, and was part of the team that won the National Edward R. Murrow Award for Best Newscast in 2022.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.