OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich — Seven Ottawa County residents have undergone testing for the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19), as of Wednesday afternoon.
Three cases have tested negative and four cases are pending results, according to the Ottawa County Department of Public Health. At this time, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ottawa County.
Kristina Wieghmink, the county health department’s public information officer, said they are working with health care providers, officials, local and state leaders, school officials, and businesses to ensure that they have information about the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidances for their organizations.
On Tuesday night, two confirmed cases of COVID-19 were announced in Michigan, according to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services. The cases involve a woman in Oakland County who traveled outside the U.S. and a man in Wayne County who traveled outside the state. Local health departments were still trying to trace their contacts as of Wednesday evening.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency on Wednesday.
“We are taking every step we can to mitigate the spread of the virus and keep Michiganders safe,” Whitmer said in a press release. “I have declared a state of emergency to harness all of our resources across the state government to slow the spread of the virus and protect families. It’s crucial that all Michiganders continue to take preventative measures to lower their risk, and to share this information with their friends, family and co-workers.”
As of Wednesday, more than 118,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 4,000 related deaths have been confirmed globally, according to the World Health Organization.
The United States had 647 total cases and 25 deaths, according to the CDC. Of those, 83 cases were travel-related, 36 were spread person-to-person and 528 were under investigation.
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic.
Michigan State University, University of Michigan, Central Michigan University and Michigan Technological University suspended in-person classes and moved to online courses because of COVID-19 concerns.
A student at Hope College was tested this week for the virus, but that test proved negative, the college said Wednesday.
Classes at Hope were canceled for today, in advance of the scheduled spring break. Beginning March 23, the college will shift to a remote learning format for all courses, with plans to resume campus instruction on April 14.
Grand Valley State University has canceled classes through March 15, converting to online teaching March 16 through at least March 29, the school said on its website.
According to the CDC, symptoms such as fever, cough and shortness of breath may occur 2-14 days after exposure. Reported illnesses have ranged from mild to severe, and sometimes death.
Wieghmink said they are encouraging residents to take precautions against respiratory illnesses.
Anyone who is sick with COVID-19 or suspects they are should stay home (with the exception of getting medical care), separate themselves from people and animals in their home, call their doctor before visiting, wear a face mask if they are sick, cover their sneezes and coughs, wash their hands often, and avoid sharing household items.
Residents are encouraged to take precautions such as washing their hands with soap and water often, avoiding close contact with people who are ill, and cleaning often-touched surfaces.
For more information about COVID-19 or taking precautions, visit miottawa.org/Health/OCHD.
This story originally appeared on the Grand Haven Tribune’s website. For similar content, visit their website grandhaventribune.com.
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