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Residents in 5 Michigan counties should mask, latest CDC COVID-19 map shows

The number of counties at a high community COVID-19 level decreased by half this week as new cases statewide declined for the third straight week.

On June 2, there were 10 high-level orange counties. As of Thursday, June 9, only Mackinac County in the Upper Peninsula, Saginaw County in mid-Michigan and Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties in southeast Michigan are orange. This means people in those areas should wear masks while indoors and in public, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which considers weekly new COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Added to the list this week are Mackinac and Saginaw counties.

Baraga and Delta counties in the U.P. and Gratiot County in mid-Michigan went from orange to low-level green. Marquette, also in the U.P., and Macomb, Livingston and Monroe counties in the southeast went from orange to medium-level yellow.

Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties have been orange for five straight weeks. All three counties, however, saw fewer new, confirmed cases from June 2 to Wednesday than from May 26 to June 1. They also saw declines last week, but the drop this week was less drastic.

RELATED: How the spring ‘22 surge compares to others: Michigan COVID data for Thursday, June 9

Thirty-seven counties are yellow and the remaining 41 are green. Most of the western lower half of the bottom peninsula and the western U.P. is green. The east side of the state and northern Michigan have been more affected by this surge.

It is only at the high level orange that the CDC recommends universal masking while indoors and in public.

However, people with symptoms, a positive test or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should wear a mask regardless of where they live, the CDC says, and people at high risk of severe illness might need to take additional precautions when in high COVID-19 communities.

To see how the CDC assessed your county, check out the interactive map below. Tap on or hover over a county to see the underlying data.

Can’t see the map above? Click here.

When it was clear the winter omicron swell had subsided, the CDC relaxed its mask guidance in February, shifting from only looking at cases and positive tests to looking at cases and hospitalizations. The idea is to prevent severe disease and limit strain on hospitals.

A county is at a high level when there are more than 200 new cases per 100,000 people in the last seven days and 10 or more new COVID-19 admissions per 100,000 people in the last week. (Not every county has a hospital, so each one is assigned a health services area, a geographic region that contains at least one hospital. Counties are attributed the metrics calculated for the entire area, weighted based on each county’s population.)

New, confirmed cases were down 4.2% this week compared to the previous week.

The percentage of tests that are positive remains high. About 13% tests were positive for SARS-CoV-2 from June 1 to June 8. This number is declining. About 15% of tests were positive for SARS-CoV-2 in the previous seven days. Tuesday, about 10% of tests were positive. This was the lowest rate since April 27.

As of Wednesday, there were 916 adult and 23 pediatric patients with confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19. Of them, 120 adults were in intensive care and 47 were on ventilators, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. There were fewer total patients this week, but slightly more on ventilators and in critical care.

On June 1, there were 972 adult and 26 pediatric patients with confirmed or suspected cases. This included 103 adults in intensive care and 39 patients on ventilators.

Across the country, reports of new cases in the United States were mostly flat. Per-capita new cases were highest in Hawaii, Alaska and Florida. Those states, in a slightly different order, topped the list last week too, according to New York Times data. Michigan is No. 29.

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