COVID Cases Spread Across Northern Michigan

Nine Counties now "high-risk" for COVID spread

COVID deaths have hit one million nationwide and the number of cases is rising again here in northern Michigan.

Just a few weeks ago, Grand Traverse County was the only one in the region to see high community level for COVID.  But now eight other counties in our area have joined that list.  Health Dept. of Northwest Michigan Interim Health Officer Dan Thorell says, “COVID cases are increasing. We’re continuing to see the BA.2 variant of Omicron take its toll.”

Health Dept Northwest MichBut Thorell also says the rise in case numbers is not a surprise. “Here in Michigan, we’re seeing a lot of counties in Michigan going from green to yellow to red, to that high risk category.” He adds, “I don’t think there’s any reason to panic, we just, you know. It’s a little different than previous surges of COVID. Now we have more tools, more testing. Vaccinations. We have all those tools at our disposal. Which is a little bit different than even a year ago. A year ago we were still heavily into vaccination clinics, getting the population vaccinated.”

In those high risk counties, you’re urged to wear masks in indoor settings. The Health Department of Northwest Michigan says cases are spreading as this latest variant is highly contagious, but COVID-positive patients are not getting as sick with the latest strain. Thorell says, “Wear a mask in indoor places that are heavily populated. Especially if you have some other health concerns that may put you at high risk. And stay up to date with your vaccinations.”  He says vaccinations don’t prevent COVID, but will help lessen the severity of COVID if you do catch it.

The health department urges you to get your booster shot, or your second one, as soon as you’re eligible. “If you haven’t gotten that first booster, you know that’s really, right now would be a good time to do that to become fully vaccinated. Those of us that are 50 years and older and maybe have some underlying health conditions that may put you at high risk, it may be time for that second booster if you’re eligible,” Thorell says.

They also say be mindful of large events and gatherings like graduations, parties, and summer get-togethers.

Meanwhile, eight other counties in northern Michigan have also been added to the medium-risk category for COVID Community-level. Most counties in the state are seeing an increase in cases compared to two weeks ago.

Categories: Coronavirus, Coronavirus Cases