Indoor group exercise allowed to resume, indoor dining remains closed

Collaborator: Rachael Schuit
Published: 01/13/2021, 11:46 AM
(LANSING, Mich.) Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced updates to the epidemic order for COVID-19 at news conference on Wednesday. Indoor groups exercise and non-contact sports can begin taking place again on Saturday January 16th. "The efforts we have made together to protect our families, frontline workers and small business owners are working. While there has been a slight uptick in our percent positivity rate, our cases per million have plateaued and more hospital beds are becoming available," said Governor Whitmer. "Today, we are confident that MDHHS can lift some of the protocols that were previously in place." While indoor group exercise and non-contact sports will be allowed to start up again, eating inside of restaurants is still not on option under the epidemic order. State officials say the plan is to reopen indoor dining on February 1st. Reopening indoor dining will involve capacity limits and a curfew. Allowing restaurants to have people eating inside on February 1st will depend on what Michigan's COVID-19 data shows. State officials are expected to release more details about the reopening plan for restaurants next week. Michigan's COVID-19 positivity rate is plateauing and is at 9.1% according to state officials. The number of hospital beds occupied by COVID-19 patients has also been going down. Right now 12% of hospital beds are filled with COVID-19 patients. Michigan's overall COVID-19 case rate is going up and cases are currently at 266 per million. "We are glad that we made it through the holidays without a big increase in numbers, but there are also worrying signs in the new numbers," said Robert Gordon, the director of MDHHS. "We need to remain focused and continue to see declines in hospitalizations and to bring case rates and percent positivity down by doing what we know works." Governor Whitmer also said it's important for people to continue wearing masks and practicing social distancing.


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