Michigan nearing variant “tipping point”

More contagious variants of COVID, mixed with loose restrictions and spring break travel, could lead to a surge of infections.

Two especially contagious variants of the virus that causes COVID-19 have made their way into Michigan. As case numbers increase, health officials warn that those variants may be poised to sweep through the state.

One new strain – the B.1.1.7 variant – has spread exponentially throughout the state since it was first discovered in mid-January. That includes outbreaks at an Ionia County prison and school sporting events in Grand Ledge.

NowKalamazoo Partner Event
Group of people laughing and chatting underneath the text "Eat. Drink. Give. Craft beer. Wine. Great food."

A fundraising gala supporting

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Friday, April 28, 2023 | 7-10PM
Girl Scouts Program & Training Center

It’s back! Eat Drink Give returns to bring hundreds of guests together to enjoy a memorable evening filled with food, drinks, music, and fun. This gala features tasty creations, an impressive selection of wine, beer, and non-alcoholic beverages for sampling, an awesome venue, fabulous raffle and auction prizes, and best of all — people who want to make a difference!

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State officials report there have now been 634 confirmed cases of the variant, though many more may exist in the general population.

In terms of raw numbers, Michigan has the second highest case count in the country, after Florida. That’s worrisome to Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, senior public health physician at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).

As Michigan loosens COVID-19 restrictions and enters the spring break travel season, we may be reaching a “tipping point,” she told Bridge Michigan.

Even as more people are vaccinated against the coronavirus, variants could lead to surges of new infections. Already, new case numbers are growing in the state, undoing months of declining infections.

“The goal is to make sure that the things that drive down transmission outweigh the things that drive up transmission,” said Bagdasarian.

You can read more here.

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