Top health official asks Michiganders to avoid gathering for Super Bowl parties
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan’s top health official is asking residents to avoid gathering with others for Super Bowl parties due to the threat of spreading COVID-19. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, said during Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Thursday (Feb. 4) that Michiganders should not let their guard down for Super Bowl Sunday. Ad“This Super Bowl Sunday, please avoid gatherings, and if you do gather, please keep it limited to only one other household, and make sure you’re wearing a mask, socially distancing and washing your hands frequently,” Khaldun said. But Khaldun said it’s important not to let the Super Bowl cause a spike in cases that could make the state move backwards.
28 cases of COVID-19 B117 variant confirmed in Washtenaw, Wayne counties, officials say
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan has confirmed 28 total cases of the COVID-19 B117 variant in Washtenaw and Wayne counties, according to state officials. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, said during Gov. “This variant is more easily spread from person to person,” Khaldun said. “If this variant becomes more common, as national experts predict it could, then we could see a very rapid rise in cases and more hospitalizations and deaths.”So far, 28 cases of the B117 variant have been identified in Michigan, all in Washtenaw and Wayne counties, Khaldun said. The B117 variant, which was traced back to the United Kingdom, has already shut down the entire University of Michigan athletic department.
Michigan’s most important COVID-19 numbers trending in right direction
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan’s most important COVID-19 numbers are once again trending in the right direction, according to the state’s top doctor. Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, provided updated numbers Thursday (Feb. 4) during Gov. The Detroit, Traverse City and Upper Peninsula regions all have case rates below 150 cases per million people, according to Khaldun. AdRight now, 6.6% of the state’s hospital beds are filled with COVID-19 patients, according to Khaldun. “Michiganders are doing their part by wearing masks, avoiding gatherings and socially distancing.”On Thursday, state officials announced 1,358 new COVID-19 cases and 74 additional deaths.
Gov. Whitmer says 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Michigan
LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer revealed Thursday that more than 1 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered across the state. By the end of Wednesday, the state had administered exactly 1,076,545 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the governor. “That number is going up as we speak,” Whitmer said. AdOfficials wanted to make teachers eligible for vaccination after setting a goal of offering in-person learning to all students by March 1.
Will Michigan shut down youth sports if COVID outbreaks threaten in-person learning?
Basketball is among the sports allowed to resume Monday at the youth level in Michigan. LANSING, Mich. – Michigan officials announced Thursday that youth contact sports will be allowed to resume next week. They were asked whether a COVID-19 outbreak among sports teams could lead to a shutdown if it threatens in-person learning. She reiterated that MDHHS will watch the COVID-19 numbers and monitor potential outbreaks closely. For contact sports to resume, masks must be worn during practices and competition, Whitmer said.
7 takeaways from Whitmer’s COVID update: Michigan sports, variant spread, metrics
Gretchen Whitmer provided an update on the state’s COVID-19 situation, addressing high school contact sports, the spread of a COVID variant, vaccinations and the latest virus trends. Khaldun and Whitmer were asked about balancing the resumption of sports and the risk of COVID-19 spread that could lead to students not being able to go to school. Michigan COVID metricsKhaldun revealed promising movement with Michigan’s three most important COVID-19 metrics. AdOn Thursday, state officials announced 1,358 new COVID-19 cases and 74 additional deaths. B117 variantThe new variant of COVID-19, B117, which shut down the University of Michigan athletic department for two weeks, is still a concern for officials.
Justice Department backs Michigan private schools in virus challenge
KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The U.S. Justice Department said Friday it’s on the side of Michigan faith-based schools that are challenging the state’s ban on in-person classes in high schools. The department's Civil Rights Division filed an argument in favor of three Catholic high schools and the Michigan Association of Non-Public Schools. “The state has failed to make any provision for consideration of the religious need of plaintiffs for in-person religious education which they sincerely believe cannot be done remotely,” the Justice Department said. A three-week ban on in-person classes at high schools and colleges was extended this week through Dec. 20. Indoor restaurant dining is also prohibited, along with high school sports, group fitness classes and trips to theaters and casinos.
Why is indoor dining at Michigan restaurants being shut down for 3 weeks despite fewer outbreaks?
Why is Michigan shutting down indoor dining at restaurants for three weeks even though there aren’t as many outbreaks linked to restaurants compared to other activities? From Wednesday (Nov. 18) through Dec. 8, Michiganders will only be able to order takeout from restaurants, unless outdoor seating is available. Gretchen Whitmer was asked the following question Sunday when she announced the Michigan Department of Health and Human Service’s new COVID-19 rules. “Restaurants and bars were able at least to mitigate some difficulties earlier in the year with outdoor dining. “That’s why this activity, like the others that are being addressed, fell into this category.”Whitmer said shutting down indoor dining at restaurants is among the actions health experts recommended to slow the spread of COVID-19.
What metrics are Michigan officials watching to decide if 3-week pause will be long enough?
On Wednesday, Michigan will enter a three-week period of heightened COVID-19 restrictions, including no indoor dining at restaurants, remote learning for high school and college students and much more. But what will determine whether three weeks is long enough or if those restrictions need to be extended? We know masks protect the wearer, protect your family who you’re going home to every day, and you don’t want to bring something home. "Three weeks from now and every day in between the three weeks, we will be watching the numbers. We’ll be watching our percent positivity rates.
Gov. Whitmer hopes Michiganders ‘double down so we can avoid a stay-home order’
While announcing the new MDHHS order for three weeks of stricter COVID-19 regulations, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said she hopes residents follow the new laws to avoid another stay-at-home order. During Sunday’s announcement, Whitmer mentioned the possibility of another stay-at-home order. Three days and more than 15,000 new COVID-19 cases later, MDHHS announced the three-week pause. Michigan reported 7,072 new COVID-19 cases and 65 additional deaths Saturday -- one day after reporting a single-day record 8,516 cases.
‘Deadly and grim’: Michigan could soon see 1,000 COVID-19 deaths per week, model says
The state of Michigan could soon see 1,000 COVID-19 deaths per week, according to a model referenced by Gov. “A leading model shows that if we don’t take aggressive action right now, we could soon see 1,000 deaths per week here in Michigan,” Whitmer said. As of Saturday afternoon, the state of Michigan has reported 251,813 COVID-19 cases and 7,994 deaths since the first cases were confirmed March 10. Michigan reported 7,072 new COVID-19 cases and 65 additional deaths Saturday -- one day after reporting a single-day record 8,516 cases. “By Feb. 15, models predict we could have as many as 20,000 additional deaths due to COVID-19 in Michigan,” Khaldun said.
Why Michigan is forcing high schools, colleges to go remote, but not younger students
Michigan officials announced Sunday that in-person learning will be shut down for college and high school classes for three weeks due to COVID-19. “Of the 200 outbreaks that we are currently investigating ... 49% of them are associated with high schools," MDHHS Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun said. "Of the total number of individual cases associated with these outbreaks, almost two-thirds of those are associated with high schools. “We know that in-person instruction is really important for younger students,” Michigan Gov. “We know that the high school students -- it’s easier for them to learn online,” Khaldun said.
Michigan high school sports council approves phased-in plan for fall sports
DETROIT Fall sports for high schools in Michigan will begin with a phased-in approach, due to COVID-19, MHSAA announced on Wednesday. The Representative Council of the Michigan High School Athletic Association approved the next steps in returning sports for member schools, adopting a plan to phase in competition for fall sports in hopes of continuing to deter the spread of COVID-19. However, moderate and high-risk sports football, girls volleyball and boys soccer may begin practice but not competition. Football will delay the start of practice with full player pads and equipment until Monday, Aug. 17. The Council chose to make these adjustments to help ensure our athletes have a safe regular season this fall.
MHSAA provides fall sports update, announces phased-in plan
Finalized the fall sports guidance documents for the safe return to activity. This guidance includes general information along with sport-specific directives for students, coaches, staff, officials and media members. The concept is fall competition will take place as locally as possible with no large-scale events, invitationals or tournaments. See the fall sport-specific guidance documents for these limits. Allowed all low-risk sports to begin practice and competition as scheduled on August 12.
Fall high school sports to begin as normal in Michigan, with COVID-19 backup plans
DETROIT Fall high school sports in Michigan are set to begin as normal, but there will be contingency plans in place for possible coronavirus (COVID-19) interruptions. High school football practices are currently scheduled to begin Aug. 10. If fall sports have to be suspended, theyll be rescheduled using a reconfigured calendar that could include winter sports starting in November and fall and spring seasons extending into July 2021, according to the MHSAA. The association also considered swapping traditional fall and spring sports seasons but determined that wasnt a feasible plan. Our plan moving forward is Fall in the Fall, starting on time.