Berrien County releases map identifying COVID-19 cases by zip code

SOUTHWEST MICHIGAN — The Berrien County Health Department has updated the way it reports COVID-19 cases.

The health department website has been updated to not only list the number of COVID-19 cases, deaths and recoveries, but also includes a map of cases by zip code.

As of 3 p.m. Thursday, Berrien County had 133 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and seven deaths as a result of the virus. Of those cases, 71 patients had recovered. According to the map released by the health department, 31 to 50 COVID-19 cases have been reported in the 49120 zip code, which includes Niles. An additional 10 to 30 cases have been reported in Buchanan’s 49107 zip code.

Elsewhere, Cass County reported 19 cases and one death, while Van Buren County reported 26 cases and two deaths. The Van Buren/Cass District Health Department has not released data of cases by zip code.

To date, the state of Michigan has reported 29,263 COVID-19 cases and 2,093 deaths.

While the number of deaths in the state of Michigan today seemed to spike, 172 more deaths reported from Wednesday’s count, MDHHS issued a statement clarifying the methodology used to count COVID-19 deaths.

Beginning Friday, April 10, MDHHS staff has been reviewing death certificate data maintained in the state’s vital records reporting systems on a weekly basis. As a part of this process, records that identify COVID-19 infection as a contributing factor to death are compared against all laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Michigan Disease Surveillance System. If a death certificate is matched to a confirmed COVID-19 case, and that record in the MDSS does not indicate a death, the MDSS record is updated to indicate the death and the appropriate local health department is notified.

These matched deaths are then included with mortality information posted to Michigan.gov/Coronavirus. On April 10, this process added 30 deaths. As a result of this week’s assessment, today’s data includes 65 additional deaths identified through this methodology.

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