Midwest COVID-19 spike isn’t impacting Kansas City metro; Doctors say cases remain low

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KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The Midwest is experiencing what it calls a “fourth wave” of the coronavirus crisis, but the good news is that the epicenter is nowhere near Kansas City.

Michigan reported more than 8,400 new COVID-19 cases Saturday, according to the state’s health department. Saturday’s daily case count is the highest the state has reported since December 7. Two months ago, state data showed daily numbers were under 600 cases.

The trend is not something leaders are seeing in either Kansas or Missouri. Doctors at the University of Kansas Health System said on a Facebook Live Tuesday that numbers in the Kansas City are continue to creep lower.

“I think overall if we are looking at the state of Kansas and Missouri, total cases are good. Much better than they have been, better than what Michigan is seeing right now,” said Dr. Dana Hawkinson, medical director of infection prevention and control at the University of Kansas Health System.

Hawkinson is cautiously optimistic about the cases of coronaviruses he and his colleagues are treating now. After more than a year of the pandemic, he said he knows just how quickly things can change.

“In our metropolitan area, our cases continue to be under 100 a day, which I think is a good benchmark. Certainly if we can push those lower it will be even better,” Hawkinson said.

Metro experts say they hope the trend in the metro continues. They say the key is for people to continue to get vaccinated while still wearing masks and socially distancing.

All adults in Kansas are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. Missouri expects to move to its next stage, making all adults eligible for a vaccine on April 9.

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