Duggan: Detroit seeing slight flattening of curve due to social distancing

While the number of coronavirus in the city of Detroit continues to rise, the rate at which they're increasing is starting to see a shift, according to the mayor.

Mayor Mike Duggan said Wednesday that after speaking with area hospitals, the numbers are still going up, but rising more slowly than the city has experienced in the past. The video below explains the curve.

“We are starting to see a little bit of flattening out," Duggan said.

The mayor said this isn't because doctors and nurses are doing anything different -- they're doing the same incredible job they've been doing all along -- but because of how well the city has done to adhere to the governor's orders to social distance and stay at home.

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“The reason this is flattening out is because of you," Duggan said.

The mayor, who served as president and CEO of the Detroit Medical Center for almost a decade, said if you look at Italy or Spain, the "curve" doctors talk about, aka the increase then decrease of cases, doesn't go directly in a curve. 

Duggan said it starts to decline a bit and people might believe it's OK to gather again. But as soon as they do, the virus has more people to spread to again and spikes upwards in cases once more. He said the only country with a true curve was South Korea, due to efficient social distancing and very aggressive testing.

Mayor Duggan pleaded with residents during this nice weather to please remember to social distance.


Denise Fair, Chief Public Health Officer of the Detroit Health Department, said as of Wednesday, there are 5,834 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 247 deaths, which is 333 more cases and 26 more deaths than Sunday.


Duggan said 170 officers so far have tested positive for COVID-19, 369 are quarantined, and 421 have returned to work. In addition, 52 Detroit firefighters have tested positive.

RELATED: Detroit police: Property owners will get social distancing violation ticket if crowd gathers


After speaking with drivers earlier, Duggan said they report riders have “overwhelmingly” adopted the new policy to take a mask provided on the DDOT buses to protect drivers and riders. 

“I think the bus is now a safer place to travel,” he said.

The mayor said drivers, however, have reported seeing individuals who are clearly not going to essential jobs or to take care of family members. Duggan said he’ll be working with transit police to handle the issue.

RELATED: Detroit bus driver dies of COVID-19 weeks after complaining of passenger's cough