BREAKING: Berrien Co. Declares Emergency, Gov. Whitmer Asks Trump For Major Disaster Declaration

22 hours ago

Physicians Assistant Jessica Hamilton, left, and Amena Beslic RN holds a swab and test tube kit to test people for COVID-19 at a drive-thru station set up in the parking lot of the Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich., Monday, March 16, 2020.
Credit AP Photo/Paul Sancya

NEW:

Berrien County officials have declared an emergency in the county due to the coronavirus.

Right now there are 11 cases in the county. Three of those people have recovered completely according to information provided by the Berrien Co. Health Dept. 

"We believe we are experiencing community spread," said a health department official. 

County officials say everyone should assume they could be exposed to COVID-19 any time they are in public. 

The latest numbers released by the State of Michigan indicated 2,856 cases and 60 deaths statewide.

Cass County now has its first case of COVID-19.

EARLIER POST:

Today Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced she is asking President Trump to declare the state a major disaster. The declaration would provide Michigan with additional assistance in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Whitmer is also asking the public for donations of masks, gloves and hand sanitizer.

Dr. Joneigh Khaldun with the Michigan Dept. of Health and Human Services says many hospitals are already "at or near capacity." She says the state is starting a "load balancing plan" where hospitals outside of Southeast Michigan (where the outbreak is the worst) would serve as relief hospitals to care for patients and provide supplies.

Whitmer again is pleading with Michigan residents to stay at home to corral the coronavirus.