Wednesday, October 27, 2021

ICHD stresses importance of youth vaccination, Michigan reaches highest positivity rate of 2021

March 25, 2021
<p>After a spike in cases amongst students in East Lansing, President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. urged students, faculty and staff to sign up for a COVID-19 early detection program called Spartan Spit. Elements of the Spartan Spit Kit photographed above on Sept. 14, 2020.</p>

After a spike in cases amongst students in East Lansing, President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. urged students, faculty and staff to sign up for a COVID-19 early detection program called Spartan Spit. Elements of the Spartan Spit Kit photographed above on Sept. 14, 2020.

Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail said in a media briefing Tuesday that 36% of COVID-19 cases are people who fall in the 16-25 age range.

Within that age group, Vail said that not everyone is at MSU or in college.

As for cases at MSU, she said this “bouncing around of cases” will happen as it is occurring throughout the community.

“It’s just across the board, we are seeing that younger age group having a higher number of cases,” Vail said.

ICHD also reported that within Ingham County:

  • Cases per day are at 252 per million (Cases per day are at 258.1 per million statewide)
  • Ingham County currently has a 9.8% positivity rate
  • Of residents 65 and older, 79.2% have received at least one dose of the vaccine
  • On average, there are 2 deaths per week since Feb. 22, particularly of people 50 and older

“We are still seeing decrease in death rates, which would line up with what’s going on with vaccination efforts,” Vail said.

The county’s target is getting back to 90% of vaccine doses received and administered, aligning them to their goal of 70% vaccination for residents 16 and above in 2021.

Michigan reached its highest positivity rate of 2021

With the recent increase in cases locally and statewide, Vail compared Ingham County's positivity rate to the state average. The county is "at least as bad" as the state, she said.

Of Michigan’s cases, 12% came back positive, making March 22 the highest positivity rate of 2021.

She said the county's positivity rate increase is likely due to a decrease in testing for COVID-19.

“When we see that our transmission rates are so high in that age group, to me, says we need to stress the importance of getting that age group vaccinated,” Vail said.

“That is an age group that tends to think that they don’t need the vaccine," she said. "If it’s a way to convince them 'you won’t have to quarantine if you're vaccinated.' ... I don’t know what it’s going to take, but we really need that group to register to get vaccinated as well. That’s going to be huge for us in terms of transmission."

Vaccination is by appointment only. To get vaccinated through the Ingham County Health Department, people can register online or call the ICHD COVID-19 vaccine hotline number at 517-887-4623.

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