We’ve all done a respectable job here in Michigan following the guidance and protecting ourselves and others from Covid-19. Most of the issues and large outbreaks we are seeing in most cases involve college students. Michigan State University has been dealing with outbreaks since the start of virtual classes. There are about 2000 students living on campus right now, normally it is 10,000 or more. With the recent outbreaks, Ingham county has stepped in to contain the outbreak. They have zeroed in on 30 large properties with known exposure to Covid-19. Everyone living in these houses are ordered to quarantine for the next two weeks. Linda S Vail an Ingham County Health Officer, issued an emergency order that mandates the quarantine for two weeks. The properties affected include 23 fraternity and sorority houses, and seven big rental houses. Ingham County Health Department plans to continuously watch these outbreaks, and if others are found, they too will be placed under quarantine.

According to a release from the Ingham County Health Department “I do not take this lightly, but there is an outbreak centered on Michigan State University (MSU) and it is quickly becoming a crisis,” said Vail. “The surge in cases we have seen over the past few weeks is alarming. I am disheartened to add that this outbreak is being fueled in part by a lack of cooperation and compliance from some MSU students, many living in the properties now under mandatory quarantine. We must contain COVID-19 cases; however, within the MSU community we have been unable to do so with comprehensive contact tracing so other means of disease containment are necessary.”

The Ingham County total case count has experienced a 52 percent increase in total cases since August 24th, with the positivity rate climbing from 2 to 5 percent. The positivity rate for the MSU community in percent positivity rate has gone up from 11 percent to 15 percent as of September 5th. More than half of the new cases in the county exist in East Lansing, with the majority being MSU students. An individual may be arrested if violation occurs in the presence of a police officer, or if he has reason to believe the individual has broken a rule or order.

Bottom line, this is not going away anytime soon. It will be helpful when we have a vaccine, but that is not likely until next year. Follow the guidance, wear a mask in public, social distance and keep washing your hands.  

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