TRI-CITY AREA — It’s been another quiet week on the COVID-19 front for Lapeer County. Since last Tuesday, May 12, there’s just been five new confirmed cases and zero deaths related to the virus. There’s been a total of 30 deaths among Lapeer County residents with the majority occurring among nursing home residents. Of the 180 confirmed cases, the health department said 111 are considered to have recovered.

By contrast St. Clair County reported more significant increases in their stats. Since May 12, they’ve recorded 55 new virus cases and six additional deaths. In one week’s time, the number of active current cases has also increased from 59 to 86. St. Clair County’s current case total stood at 467 as of Monday, May 18, with 349 recovered. The county’s death total currently stands at 32.

Some of the increase was due to backlogged results being reported electronically into the Michigan Disease Surveillance System and increased testing at correctional facilities across the state. On Thursday, St. Clair County’s new case count grew by 22. The day prior it increased by 13. On Monday and Tuesday, those stats had been in the single digits.

“This backlog in reporting did not result in delays of notification to individuals with positive results as those results were transmitted separately to health care providers who are responsible for notifying individuals about their test results,” the state said in a press release.

Lapeer County Health Department Director Kathy Haskins continued to caution that relaxing the current restrictions needs to be done gradually.

“While I understand, especially with better weather arriving soon, that people are eager to go places and gather with friends and family, we also need to remember that we are still within 2 weeks of another spike (one incubation period) if not walked into in the right way. As we move toward reopening business, we just need to do it smartly. By keeping up with physical distancing and wearing a face cover in public, along with frequent hand washing and disinfecting, we can continue to make progress in the effort to reduce the severity of a second wave of infection,” she said.

“Our actions make a difference whether we slow or increase the spread of COVID-19 in our community.”