GAYLORD — The positivity rate for COVID-19 in Northern Michigan is exceeding levels seen in previous surges of the disease.

Dr. Christine Nefcy, chief medical officer for Munson Healthcare, said Tuesday 21% of tests for the disease in the area served by the Munson system were positive, higher than the overall state rate of 16.8%, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).

Nefcy also discussed breakthrough cases or those who have contracted the coronavirus even after getting vaccinated. She said 1.5% of those who are fully vaccinated in Michigan met the criteria of a breakthrough case. Of those who were vaccinated and got COVID-19 and later died, about 87% were over the age of 65.

“We know that when you are older your immune system doesn’t

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