As the number of coronavirus cases increases in Michigan and across the country, President Donald Trump and many of his supporters are denying it as a result of increased tests.
“The media is doing everything possible to create fear before November 3,” Trump said on Twitter on Saturday morning. “Cases happen because TESTING is by far the most and the best in the world. Mortality is DOWN 85% plus! “
Health experts point to a number of indicators that contradict Trump’s claim. In fact, deaths, hospitalizations and test positivity are on the rise, indicating that the increase in cases reflects a real increase in coronavirus transmission.
“Although testing levels continue to rise, testing alone does not account for the increase we are seeing in the COVID-19 case in Michigan,” said Lynn Satfin, a spokeswoman for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. “We are experiencing dramatic increases in all regions of the state, with more cases among the younger Michiganders we saw in the spring. Outbreaks occur in workplaces, schools and universities and due to social gatherings.”
- The average number of daily tests increased by 30% in October compared to September, but the number of new cases increased by 87%.
- “The percentage of positive tests increased from 3.2% in September to 4.4% in October. Last week, the positivity rate was 5.5%.
- Hospitalizations have increased. On September 26, 503 adults with confirmed or suspected coronavirus were hospitalized in Michigan. Monday, October 26, was 1479.
- Deaths are on the rise. In the first 26 days of October, there were 449 deaths compared to 289 for the whole of September.
It is true that the current case numbers are not comparable to last March and April due to the huge differences in testing. But looking at newer numbers is another story, experts say.
Despite the new records, Michigan almost certainly had more cases of coronavirus last spring
The idea that the current jump is about testing is an “absurd idea,” said Joel Strash, a health officer in Bay County’s health department.
“There is a demand for more tests, which comes from the fact that more people are suffering from symptoms and more people are exposed to someone with a coronavirus. “Demand is not increasing just because there are more tests available,” he said. “My advice is to trust public health experts. This is a public health problem, not a political one. “
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