Coronavirus in Michigan: Here’s where we stand as of Tuesday morning

New case confirmed

A satellite image of Michigan (NASA)

DETROIT – Monday included a change to Michigan’s coronavirus reporting system, a new confirmed case and an Executive Order that alters many people’s routines and lives.

Here’s what happened Monday:

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs 4 Executive Orders

Business closures, restaurant changes

Whitmer signed an order that limited bars and restaurants to carryout orders only.

It also closed cafes, coffee houses, bars, taverns, brewpubs, distilleries, clubs, movie theaters, indoor and outdoor performance venues, gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, exercise studios, spas and casinos through March 30.

The order does not include barbershops, hair salons, nail salons or funeral homes.

Gathering sizes limited

Starting at 9 a.m. Tuesday, indoor events that have more than 50 people are banned.

This ban does not include health care facilities, workplaces not open to the public, the state legislature, mass transit, grocery stores, and the performance of agricultural or construction work.

The ban will last until 5 p.m. April 5.

Unemployment benefit expansion

Whitmer also signed an order expanding unemployment benefits to help people impacted by changes the coronavirus has caused.

Under the governor’s order, unemployment benefits would be extended to:

  • Workers who have an unanticipated family care responsibility, including those who have childcare responsibilities due to school closures, or those who are forced to care for loved ones who become ill.
  • Workers who are sick, quarantined, or immunocompromised and who do not have access to paid family and medical leave or are laid off.
  • First responders in the public health community who become ill or are quarantined due to exposure to COVID-19.

The extension will be in effect through April 14.

Weight restrictions

Whitmer signed an order Monday night lifting weight restrictions for vehicles carrying items that will be used to slow the spread of coronavirus.

This includes “medical supplies and equipment related to the testing, diagnosis, and treatment of COVID-19; supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and the prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap, and disinfectants; food for the emergency restocking of stores; equipment, supplies, and people necessary to establish and manage temporary housing, quarantine, and isolation facilities related to the COVID-19 emergency; people designated by federal, state, or local authorities for medical, isolation, or quarantine purposes; and people necessary to provide other medical or emergency services, the supply of which may be affected by the COVID-19 emergency.”

All state and local seasonal load restrictions are suspended for the vehicles making these deliveries through April 13.

State changes reporting system

The state is changing how it reports coronavirus cases.

A daily count will be added to the state website at 2 p.m. each day. That number will include cases reported through midnight the previous day.

The metrics will include cases and deaths broken down by county, cases by 10-year increment age ranges and cases by sex.

MDHHS will no longer report the number of persons under investigation, tests pending or referred for assessment and/or monitoring to date and total assessment and/or monitoring referrals under active monitoring.

Another case confirmed

The state total rose to 54 as of Monday afternoon.

The new case is an adult female from Macomb County with history of domestic travel.

MORE: Here’s which Michigan counties have confirmed cases of coronavirus

Also, officials with the South Lyon school district confirmed that a student at Salem Elementary School has tested positive for the virus.

New Tuesday: Bus stoppage

There are Detroit Department of Transportation (DDOT) bus drivers refusing to drive routes Tuesday morning due to coronavirus concerns.

The drivers say they have concerns about the pandemic that are not being addressed. They are citing the Michigan governor’s order that disallows more than 50 people in a gathering at a time and the CDC guidelines that recommend no groups larger than 10. Mayor Mike Duggan said the service is shut down Tuesday until drivers’ concerns are addressed.

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?

  • People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
  • Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

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.

MORE: Beaumont Health launches coronavirus hotline for patients with symptoms

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

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

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