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Michigan health officials round-table to discuss coronavirus surge

Published: Oct. 26, 2020 at 5:19 PM EDT
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Mich. (WNDU) - The Allegan County Health Officer feels like she’s fighting the coronavirus, and residents who are deeply divided on what steps should be taken.

Today, Michigan logged more than 3,881 new cases which is the highest daily total to date.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services today held a virtual round table meeting to discuss the recent surge in coronavirus cases.

“The good news is we now know far more about COVID than we did in the spring,” said MDHHS Director Robert Gordon. “Where we used a hammer then we can use a scalpel now.”

“Low tech and accessible interventions can work to slow this. Things like required masking and reducing group sizes that, when infection is introduced into a group it does not spread as readily and to as many other parts of the community,” added Dr Emily Martin with the University of Michigan.

The pandemic is now in its eighth month.

“What we’re seeing increasingly, and this is was clear eight months ago from Singapore data, about 20 percent of people account for about 80 percent of transmission,”!said former CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden M.D. “Think of a formula of risk. I have a slide on this but basically says the number of people, the prevalence of COVID where they are, the proportion of masking, the amount of time, the type of behavior, choir versus a Buddhist silent retreat and all of those things are going to enter into the risk.”

Frieden also stressed that quarantined individuals must obey the rules. “You can test negative in the morning and be highly infectious in the afternoon and there are false negative tests as well even with PCR, there may be 20 or 30 percent false negatives. What we know is if you’ve been exposed, between two and 14 days later you’re likely to be sick if you get sick.”

The experts also suggested that restaurants should be graded on the steps they’ve taken to reduce the spread of the virus.

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