TRAVERSE CITY — Health officials across northern Lower Michigan reported at least 10 new cases of COVID-19 since before the recent weekend.
There currently are 537 confirmed cases of the pandemic disease across the 17-county area that stretches from Manistee County on Lake Michigan to Alpena County on Lake Huron, according to statistics released Monday by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.
An additional case in Benzie County was confirmed late Monday by the Benzie-Leelanau District Health Department, bringing the regional total to 538 cases and 44 reported deaths.
State records show Grand Traverse County has four new cases since Friday, confirmed by local health officials.
The new cases involve a woman in her 20s with no travel history or known exposure, plus two symptomatic men in their 50s with a history of domestic travel. No air travel happened during their infectious periods, according to the Grand Traverse County Health Department.
Details of the fourth case are yet unknown.
Nearby Benzie County now has eight confirmed cases, an uptick by three since last week. Those cases are all unrelated, officials said.
Meanwhile, Leelanau County dropped three cases from its tally.
Michelle Klein, BLDHD personal health director, said a handful of cases discovered last week in Leelanau County through testing at a nursing home were reassigned to the proper counties — one to Wexford and three to Grand Traverse.
She said none of the infected nursing facility staff were Leelanau County residents and furthermore, it’s not unusual for cases to be moved to other counties during case investigations; that may even happen to a couple of the new cases in Benzie County.
Mistakes about home addresses for those being tested can easily happen as an increased number of tests are done — some now even at Rite Aid pharmacies, Klein said.
The Michigan National Guard will assist with free community testing both Tuesday and Wednesday in Cadillac. Similar events have happened in more than two dozen communities during the last six weeks.
Other changes in regional COVID-19 numbers since Friday include two new cases in Missaukee County and single new cases in Alpena, Crawford, Kalkaska and Wexford counties.
State health officials on Monday announced 236 new cases statewide and four additional deaths. That brings Michigan’s total confirmed cases to nearly 63,500 and more than 5,900 deaths.
Health officials at Johns Hopkins University & Medicine reported on Monday there are now more than 2.5 million cases across the United States and nearly 126,000 deaths nationwide.
There have been 10.2 million cases worldwide and nearly 503,000 deaths, according to figures tracked by Johns Hopkins’ experts.