Military In Michigan Fighting Virus Surge

Written By BlabberBuzz | Saturday, 27 November 2021 16:45

Michigan has requested federal military medical assistance to deal with the worst COVID-19 surge in the country, as Minnesota is asking its National Guard to back the struggling medical team in its hard-hit care homes.

Both states are seeing rapidly-rising COVID cases and hospitalizations as the cold weather forces people back indoors.

Michigan is the current epicenter of the fourth wave, with cases up 88 percent in the last two weeks alone, according to The New York Times's COVID tracking.

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Hospitalizations in Michigan have spiked 48 per cent in the last 14 days, and deaths 64 per cent. According to the state health department, of 3,114 ICU beds in the state, 85 percent - or 2,651 - are occupied.

Nearly 58 percent of residents over the age of five are fully vaccinated - below the national rate of nearly 63 percent - and the Democrat governor of Michigan, Gretchen Whitmer, has been begging her state's residents to get vaccinated.

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Minnesota's cases are up 26 per cent in the last 14 days, and hospitalizations up 30 percent.

Deaths in the state have risen by nearly 15 percent in the last two weeks, with the area surrounding Minneapolis hardest hit.

The situation is likely to worsen following Thanksgiving, with people traveling and spending time indoors while in large groups.

The TSA expected to screen about 20 million air passengers during the Thanksgiving travel period - the most since 2019 when nearly 26 million Americans were on the move at that time.

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Airports and commercial airlines across the United States recorded one of their busiest days since before the pandemic on Wednesday as millions of Americans traveled to visit loved ones for the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Thanksgiving-eve usually tends to be the busiest day for travel.

This year, however, working from home allowed many people to travel early and avoid the last-day rush.

AAA also predicted 53.4 million people will travel for Thanksgiving this year - an increase of 13 percent, or 6.4 million more travelers, from last year.

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Of those, it says, 48.3 million will drive and 4.2 million will fly.

Another one million will travel via other means, including rail.

Many feel encouraged by the fact that nearly 200 million Americans are now fully vaccinated.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns unvaccinated people should not travel, although it is unclear whether that recommendation is having any effect.

"This Thanksgiving, travel will look a lot different than last year," stated Paula Twidale, the senior vice president of AAA Travel.

"Now that the borders are open and new health and safety guidelines are in place, travel is once again high on the list for Americans who are ready to reunite with their loved ones for the holidays."

Notably travelers are going to face sky-high fuel prices and increased car rental and flight prices. Demand is hitting a peak from the slowdown during the coronavirus pandemic amid a global supply chain crisis and fuel spikes.

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