An emergency stay-in-place order for University of Michigan undergraduate students which began on October 20 ended on Monday, November 2, following a decrease in university-related cases.
The order, which was enforced by the Washtenaw County Health Department, was handed down after more than 60 percent of Washtenaw County COVID-19 cases were from students at the university. This high number made it difficult for case investigators and contact tracers to fully monitor the scale of the outbreak.
While students are still required to remain in their residences, they are now allowed some leeway for important activities. This includes attending in-person classes, getting food, visiting the doctor, voting, and working with employer approval.
Effective Measure Against COVID-19
As a result of the stay-in-place order, health department officials have noted that the university proportion of COVID-19 cases has decreased. The reduction in new cases has allowed case investigators and contact tracers to catch up with new infections.
“We’re thankful for this small bit of good news, but we all must continue to do everything we can to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on each of us and on our community.” Washtenaw County health officer Jimena Loveluck told MLive.
On the day the order was lifted, Washtenaw County reported more than 6,000 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19.
Safety Guidelines Remain in Place
State health orders mandate that all residents must continue following safety guidelines such as wearing a face mask when in public or common areas, and maintaining social distance of at least six feet from those not in their household.
Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti are still following a local order which limits outdoor gatherings to 25 or fewer people in residential settings.
With Thanksgiving and the flu season around the corner, health officials clarify that people must continue limiting social gatherings because most confirmed cases continue to be from social gatherings and events where people do not properly practice preventative measures.