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The COVID-19 Diary

Friday, May 21:

This issue of The COVID-19 Diary will be the last edition of this special newsletter Downtown Newsmagazine has been publishing for the past 14 months about the pandemic first declared in March of 2020.

When we first launched this newsletter on our website and as an email newsletter sent out to thousand of readers, we saw the urgent need for critical information about the novel coronavirus which could only come from reading a large swath of sources that most people do not follow on a regular basis, if at all. So we began to curate information, on a daily basis, from about 30 print and online news sources —ranging from The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Detroit Free Press, The Detroit News, Time, Newsweek, to diverse publications like Wired magazine, Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, medical journals, data centers for Oakland County and the state of Michigan, Johns Hopkins University, the CDC and the COVID Tracking Project as part of The Atlantic magazine, just to offer a sampling of sources we relied on for this newsletter.

For the first eight-nine months we put out the The COVID-19 Diary on a Monday thru Friday basis, and even on an occasional Saturday or Sunday when important information was available. It became a job unto itself. We eventually moved this year to a twice weekly basis — usually on Mondays and Fridays. Of late, the publishing schedule has been a more sporadic one.

Make no mistake — COVID-19 is not disappearing and will be with us for some length of time, if not forever. But the initial concerns about the pandemic have evolved since the early days when there was little (let alone reliable) information available about this virus. Many states (including Michigan) have now started to reopen, thanks to vaccines and adherence to guidelines from the medical community. We know much more now, have better (but still not perfect) data reporting systems and the scientific community appears to have a better grip on the pandemic.

Oakland County and the state of Michigan seem to have learned how to manage the coronavirus, as evidenced by declining daily numbers in terms of confirmed cases, fatalities, positive diagnostic test percentages and hospital ICU occupancy numbers.

All good news. A perfect time to retire The COVID-19 Diary. Thanks for following our effort.


State lawmakers and governor reach deal that includes scrapping long-term COVID-19 work rules and sets the stage for more collaborative decisions on future health emergency rules. (Dave Boucher/Detroit Free Press)


State lifts mask mandates for those who are fully vaccinated. (Craig Mauger, Breana Noble/The Detroit News)


Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer lifts all outdoor capacity restrictions starting June 1, along with other rollbacks on past limitations during pandemic. (Dave Boucher, Kristen Jordan Shamus/Detroit Free Press)


The lingering COVID-19 health effects for what have become known as ‘long-haulers’ analyzed in a study issued this week by University of Michigan researchers. (Leonard N. Fleming/The Detroit News)


Epidemiologists say U.S. can fully return to normal when more people, including children, are vaccinated. (Claire Cain Miller, Kevin Quealy, Margot Sanger-Katz/The New York Times)


The payoffs and perils of mass vaccinations for children in the country. (Lauren Dmaera, Chelsea Cirruzzol, Cecelia Smith-Schoenwalder/US News)


Booster shots for COVID-19 may be needed a year after getting first vaccination shot; studies still underway. (Virginia Langmaid, Amir Vera/CNN)

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A decade ago we assembled a small but experienced and passionate group of publishing professionals all committed to producing an independent newsmagazine befitting the Birmingham/Bloomfield area that, as we like to say, has long defined the best of Oakland County. 


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