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Kent County issues a public health warning when the COVID-19 positive rate exceeds 15%

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The COVID-19 risk level in Kent County is currently considered the “highest risk”, the Ministry of Health said Friday.

Kent County, Michigan — The Kent County Health Department issued a public health warning on Friday, reporting a positive rate of over 15% for the county’s entire community.

“Our local infection rates have reached dangerous levels,” said Dr. Adam London, director of KCHD. “We take decisive community-wide action to protect the health of residents and reduce pressure on hospitals, front-line healthcare professionals, public health case investigators, and contact tracers. is needed.”

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The Public Health Warning extends and strengthens some of the three-week epidemic orders issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

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As London expects a lot, it encourages residents to stop multiple households, places of worship to stop face-to-face services, and high schools from staying in remote areas until January 15. We still meet for Christmas and New Year.

“The 14-day buffer in early January basically gives us time for quarantine and separation of people after vacation,” London said on Friday, November 20.

The average number of new cases each day has increased more than 10-fold in the last eight weeks. The county also reports about 7 new COVID-19-related deaths per day. Hospitals are approaching their abilities with patients who medical professionals say are far more ill than they were in the spring.

KCHD encourages immediate isolation of anyone with symptoms that are “widely associated with COVID-19.” It is also advisable for people over the age of 65 and those with underlying health to avoid gatherings and time in public places.

“The tests performed by healthcare providers do not actually show many other respiratory illnesses, so anyone with symptoms that are widely associated with COVID-19 is assumed to be COVID-19. Must be, “said London.

Warnings also encourage people to minimize time in the enterprise by choosing delivery or pickup if possible.

High school programs, cognitively impaired students, and center-based programs that serve special needs populations can continue under county recommendations. Ron Caniff, KentISD’s superintendent of education, said the district would take a closer look at the data to determine how the data would progress.

Read the full public health warning here.

London said public health orders are being considered at the county level and will continue to be considered.

“But what we’ve heard out loud from people is that recommendations can be a better approach that people want to voluntarily participate in,” he said. “In many cases, we know that orders have caused protests, civil disobedience, and inspiration, and now we hope that everyone can voluntarily comply with them. , I’m making higher recommendations. “

He said there was no specific threshold for when an order would be issued, but he expects Kent County residents to follow the recommendations.

“I really hope that I don’t have to process my order at a later date,” London said. “This is not a hoax. Now everyone needs to be aware of it.”

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