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Coronavirus updates, May 14: Whitmer lifts mask requirement; over 1,700 cases reported

Here are the COVID-19 updates for Friday, May 14.
Credit: WZZM/CDC

MICHIGAN, USA — Here is the latest information on the coronavirus in Michigan, including the number of cases state offices report and other updates affecting West Michigan.

Friday's Cases

Friday the Michigan Department of Health Human Services reported 1,766 daily cases of COVID-19 and 34 deaths. 

The case total in the state now stands at 873,335 and 18,500 have died from the virus.  

See full data here

Whitmer lifts mask requirement for fully vaccinated in Michigan 

Michiganders who are fully vaccinated will no longer be required to wear a mask. 

Friday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has updated the department's mask order to align with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest guidance. 

Yesterday, the CDC updated its guidance recommending “fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.”  

Under the updated order 

  • Michiganders who are outdoors will no longer need to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status. 
  • While indoors, fully vaccinated will no longer need to wear a mask. 
  • Residents who are not vaccinated must continue to wear a mask. 
  •  After July 1, the broad indoor mask mandate will expire.  

Full story 

Meijer mask mandate remains in place 

Michigan lifted its mask requirement for fully vaccinated people Friday but Meijer Inc. is keeping the mandate in place for shoppers.  

The company said in a statement: 

"While we are aware of new CDC guidance, many state or local orders in the Meijer footprint remain in effect regarding masks. In order to help ensure the continued health and safety of all its team members and customers, Meijer continues to require face coverings by anyone entering a Meijer store or Meijer Express station at all locations, except where medical conditions prevent them from wearing one."

Full story

Lt. Gov. Gilchrist visiting Grand Rapids for ‘Making Real Change’ tour 

Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist stopped in Grand Rapids Friday as part of his “Making Real Change” tour to promote vaccinations throughout Michigan.

The aim of the tour is to close racial disparities in health and in other areas within the community. Gilchrist’s visited at 1 p.m. and joined a group of people getting their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.  

Full story

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can largely ditch masks indoors

In a major step toward returning to pre-pandemic life, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eased mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people on Thursday, allowing them to stop wearing masks outdoors in crowds and in most indoor settings.

“Today is a great day for America,” President Joe Biden said during a Rose Garden address heralding the new guidance, an event where he and his staff went without masks. Hours earlier in the Oval Office, where Biden was meeting with vaccinated Republican lawmakers, he led the group in removing their masks when the guidance was announced.

Read more

Kent County Health Department opens 200 vaccine appointments for children 12-15

The Kent County Health Department is preparing to vaccinate 200 children 12-15 this weekend. 

This comes after the approval from the Centers for Disease Control Wednesday on the Pfzer/BioNTech's vaccine for 12-15 year-olds. KCHD has appointment availability this weekend at the health department at 700 Fuller Ave NE.

The clinics will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. the following Saturday, May 22.

Those interested in attending this clinic can register online at http://bit.ly/kentccvp or call (616) 326-6992. Residents can also call 2-1-1 for assistance.

Full story

Thursday's Cases

2,057 daily cases of COVID-19 were reported by the Michigan Department of Health Human Services Thursday.

112 deaths were also reported. The deaths announced today include 73 deaths identified during a records review from the state.

State recommendations for COVID-19

People with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms, ranging from mild to severe illnesses. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus, according to the CDC. The symptoms include:

  • Fever  
  • Cough  
  • Shortness of breath 
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea 

*Note: This list does not include all possible symptoms. It will be updated as the CDC and health officials learn more about the virus. 

The best prevention for viruses, such as influenza, the common cold or COVID-19 is to:  

  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.     
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.    
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.    
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.    
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.

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