Munson Healthcare, Local Heath Dept.’s Concerned for Increase in Cases After Thanksgiving

Ahead of the holiday, Munson Healthcare and Northern Michigan health departments are encouraging people to take precautions at Thanksgiving gatherings.

Munson Medical CenterThey’re expecting a surge of COVID-19 cases on top of the already increasing cases.

“We’re essentially replicating the worst surge we saw in Michigan about a year ago,” said Grand Traverse County Health Department Health Officer Wendy Hirschenberger.

It was bleak news from both Munson Healthcare and local health departments today with cases and percent positivity rates.

Grand Traverse County has been exploding with cases daily.

“We, as a county, have had many days over 100 cases a day, which is really our upper threshold that we’ve seen throughout the pandemic,” said Hirschenberger. “We are now averaging about 80-87 cases a day for the last week.”

District Health Department #10’s Medical Director, Dr. Jennifer Morse, says her county’s positivity rates continue to increase.

“Our percent positivity is averaging around 20%, but we have several counties that are close to 30%, which is really, to me, quite shocking,” said Dr. Morse.

Pediatricians are concerned with the amount of kids that are being diagnosed with COVID-19, even with vaccines approved for 5 to 11 year olds just a few weeks ago.

“We’re testing probably 20-30 patients a day, and a good half of those are coming back positive,” said Dr. James Robertson, a pediatrician for Kids Creek Children’s Clinic Pediatrician. “We’re seeing it in kids as young as 2.”

Munson Patients

Numbers updated as of Nov. 23.

And as we head into the holiday weekend, Munson’s inpatient numbers aren’t bringing comfort to staff.

“We all kind of rallied and thought when the vaccines came out, we thought that things would settle down after that,” said Munson Healthcare’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Christine Nefcy. “When that didn’t happen, I think that was really hard on our staff.”

They’re worried there’ll be another spike in cases after Thanksgiving.

“If there’s any indication that you might have it, you need to get tested soon,” said Hirschenberger. “You need to stay home and take precautions and, unfortunately, if that means missing Thanksgiving or something like that, the delay then just results in more people getting infected from one case.”

Categories: Coronavirus, Coronavirus Cases, Coronavirus Support