(This story was updated at 4:30 p.m.)
WEDNESDAY, April 22 — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is calling on residents to get tested for COVID-19 in order to help the state better understand the scope of the pandemic in Michigan. She urges anyone who has flu-like symptoms — like fever, cough, and shortness of breath — to be tested immediately.
Under expanded state guidelines, anyone with symptoms can be tested without doctor’s orders. Additionally, all critical infrastructure workers, including first responders and health care personnel, can — and are encouraged — to get tested for the coronavirus as soon as possible.
In Greater Lansing, at least three testing sites are available:
MSU Health Care is testing in Parking Lot 100, east of the Radiology Building at the Clinical Center and requires a driver’s license and a doctor’s order. Residents do not need to call ahead for an appointment. No payment or insurance coverage is necessary.
Testing is available on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 3:40 p.m. Those seeking a COVID-19 test must first be screened by calling the Ingham Community Health Center hotline.
Patients with flu-like symptoms can call Sparrow Health System at (877) 205-1300 to set up an appointment for a COVID-19 test. Call 517-364-1000 for general questions
Click here to search for another testing site in Michigan.
The numbers …
Ingham County tracked its seventh coronavirus-related death this afternoon as the number of COVID-19 deaths statewide climbed by more than 100 past 2,800. A total of 19 virus-related deaths have now been reported across the tri-county region to date.
About two dozen new coronavirus cases were also confirmed in Greater Lansing, bringing the regional total to at least 560 as the number of cases tracked statewide climbed to nearly 34,000.
Here are the latest statistics for Greater Lansing, Michigan and the country:
Cases — 350
Recoveries — 104
Recovery Rate — 29.7%
Deaths — 7
Fatality Rate — 2%
At least 61-65 cases are tracked in southwest Lansing in zip code 48911. Much of the rest of south Lansing, Mason, East Lansing, Meridian and Bath townships each tally 36-45 cases in zip codes 48910, 48823 and 48854. Zip code 48864 tracks 26-30 cases. Zip codes 48912, 48842 and 48906 each track between 16-25 cases. Zip codes 88915, 48840, 48895, 48917, 48819, 48827, 48892, 48909, 48933, 49251, 49264 and 49285 each track 15 cases or less.
Ingham County officials have also tracked at least a few COVID-19 cases among the patients and staff at Burcham Hills Retirement Community in Lansing and the Ingham County Medical Care Facility in Okemos. Health Officer Linda Vail estimated at a press briefing today that at least two cases had been identified at each location.
Cases — 105
Recoveries — 60
Recovery Rate — 57.1%
Deaths — 5
Fatality Rate — 4.8%
Cases — 105
Deaths — 7
Fatality Rate — 6.7%
Officials at the Mid-Michigan County Health Department do not report recovery statistics.
Cases — 33,966 (+3%)
Recoveries — 3,237 (as of 4/17/20)
Recovery Rate — 9.5%
Deaths — 2,813 (+4.2%)
Fatality Rate — 8.3%
State reports show about 76% of cases (and about 83% of deaths) are from Oakland, Macomb and Wayne counties, including Detroit. Data also shows African Americans accounted for 33% of cases and 40% of deaths. Caucasians accounted for 31% of cases and 44% of deaths; those of an unknown race charted 22% of cases and 11% of deaths.
At least 655 cases and 25 deaths are among Michigan Department of Corrections inmates.
Cases — 835,316
Deaths — 45,950
Fatality Rate — 5.5%
Michigan has the sixth most cases in the country, behind New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, California and Pennsylvania. Michigan ranks third in most virus-related deaths behind New York and New Jersey.
Despite rumors of a larger demonstration, only a few protesters were spotted outside the Michigan State Capitol this afternoon. None carried signs. Only an American Flag, some guns, ammunition and some camouflage. Their message was unclear.
The Michigan Conservative Coalition penned an open letter yesterday to Lansing Mayor Andy Schor clarifying that no future “Operation Gridlock” protests have been planned in Lansing as Whitmer formulates plans to allow certain sectors of the economy to return to business.
The organizers also chided protesters who decided to leave their vehicles to protest on the Capitol lawn at last week’s event, even though leaders of the group had joined in the protest. Meshawn Maddock, board member at the Conservative Coalition, left her vehicle several times.
Maddock encouraged a reporter for City Pulse to focus on the “tens of thousands” who stayed inside their vehicles, insisting that she only left her car to help keep traffic moving and to give interviews to local media outlets that were covering the protest.
“It was very important to talk to the media,” Maddock explained. “We told everybody to stay in their vehicles. I don’t think anybody could say the point we made wasn’t a loud and clear one.”
Recent reports from Reuters indicate that Facebook has been removing anti-quarantine protest events if they encourage participants to defy government guidelines — much like Michigan’s lockdown order. At least one gridlock style protest in Michigan has since disappeared online.
The Office and Professional Employees International Union, Local 459 called for salaries at McLaren’s corporate offices to be capped at $1 million while its lower-tier, frontline employees continue to face furloughs and the potential for widespread layoffs on the horizon. The union represents 1,100 health-care workers in the Lansing area.
Officials at the East Lansing Police Department urge residents to take precautions on electric scooter rentals, like Gotcha, that remain available downtown. While scooters remain a part of Michigan’s critical transportation infrastructure and licensing for their operations in East Lansing remains in effect through June, city officials are encouraging residents to wash their hands and strictly use the devices only for essential travel.
According to the Lansing State Journal, a student has sued Michigan State University, demanding tuition, fee and room and board refunds for students now that classes have moved online and most students left campus. Students have been issued a $1,120 refund for moving out early but otherwise received no other discounts.
Whitmer, at a press conference this afternoon, suggested that she would release details about how to phase back certain sectors of the economy later this week. But she also made clear that an extension to her “Stay Safe, Stay Home” order beyond April 30 will become a necessity.
Michigan has tracked a 15% reduction in coronavirus-related hospitalizations over the last 10 days, but aggressive measures still need to be taken to prevent a second wave of cases across the state, she explained. A very limited selection of businesses is expected to reopen quickly.
Whitmer also announced today that an unnamed number of state employees across all sectors of state government will be temporarily laid off for at least 10 days. Those personnel will retain their insurance benefits and be automatically enrolled in the state’s unemployment system.
Additionally, Whitmer has since taken a 10% pay cut through the end of the fiscal year and also encouraged her senior-level staff to take at least a 5% pay cut during the ongoing pandemic. Attorney General Dana Nessel also laid off about 25% of her staff and slashed her own pay.
State officials, under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s direction, quickly reeled back two contracts with organizations hired to assist with coronavirus contact tracing yesterday after a Livingston County commissioner raised concerns about one of the group’s affiliation with the Democratic Party, reports the Detroit Free Press.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services plans to publish this week the names of nursing homes with COVID-19 cases, as well as the number of suspected cases that each has, reports the Detroit News.
Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist called on federal officials yesterday to reach an agreement and authorize additional funding to the Paycheck Protection Program funds from the U.S. Small Business Administration. To date, more than 43,000 businesses in the state have received more than $10 billion in loans. More will be distributed.
A Royal Oak city commissioner who attended “Operation Gridlock” last week in Lansing will not resign despite recent calls from the public — and Mayor Mike Fournier — for her to leave office, reports the Detroit Free Press.
Organizers of Electric Forest have canceled this year’s festival but look forward to another event in 2021.
Beaumont Health yesterday announced it will lay off about 2,475 workers — mostly administrative staff — and permanently cut about 450 mostly corporate positions amid the pandemic, reports Bridge Magazine. The cuts arrived as the state’s largest hospital system continues to hemorrhage cash through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest information is posted online at michigan.gov/coronavirus and cdc.gov/coronavirus.
City Pulse needs your support now more than ever. Advertising — almost all our revenue — has fallen sharply because of closures due to the coronavirus. Our staff is working seven days a week to help keep you informed. Please do what you can at this time to contribute to the City Pulse Fund. All donations are tax-deductible.
No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here