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Health

Paulette Parker / Michigan Radio

Beaumont Health’s hospital in Wayne is currently closed. John Fox is Beaumont’s CEO. He says the closure is temporary.

It had been converted to take COVID-19 patients only. Since it appears the pandemic is leveling off, all the patients and staff were sent to other hospitals.

“So, we did not need the Wayne 200 beds for that. And we’re now have it being sanitized and we’ll be on the process of converting it back,” Fox said during an online news conference.

Community Mental Health advocates offer support line

Apr 22, 2020
Adobe Stock

There’s a new mental health resource in mid-Michigan to help people cope with stress brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Community Mental Health Authority of Clinton, Eaton and Ingham counties, or CEI, has set up a telephone support line staffed with counselors who can talk with callers about personal issues.

Courtesy photo / City of Detroit

On Tuesday, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a partnership with CVS Health to roll out rapid COVID-19 testing in Dearborn. The Abbott ID NOW™ COVID-19 test offers super-fast results, under 15 minutes.

Detroit was one of the first cities to deploy the rapid test, particularly to screen first responders and health care workers in quarantine, so healthy people could return to work. Mayor Mike Duggan suggested on Monday a deal for more machines was coming. But NPR reports some health care systems have stopped using it because of questions about its reliability.

CDC

Experts from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control are helping the city of Detroit assess the COVID-19 spread in the city’s nursing homes.

124 Detroit nursing home residents have died since the outbreak began. Hundreds more have tested positive for the disease, though half showed no symptoms.

Courtesy of Michigan Nurses Association

Mercy Health's Hackley Hospital in Muskegon has fired an ICU nurse after he brought media attention to safety concerns about the hospital's response to COVID-19. That's according to the Michigan Nurses Association.

The nurse's union alleged Justin Howe was fired for speaking publicly about inadequate personal protective equipment and about the need for improved screening measures at the hospital.

A healthcare worker process a COVID-19 test at Beaumont.
Beaumont Health

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says the state is ramping up contact tracing for positive cases of COVID-19. That involves monitoring and testing people who have been in contact with a positive case. 

MSU nursing student trades class time for 12-hour shifts on coronavirus ICU

Apr 20, 2020

The first thing Johnny Choi noticed when he walked into the coronavirus intensive care unit was the sea of ventilators.

The Michigan State University nursing student had just been pulled from a twice-monthly externship helping with victims of head injuries and strokes at Ascension Providence Hospital in Novi to a full-time position as a support nurse in the COVID-19 unit.

woman testing driver for coronavirus
Airman 1st Class Taylor D. Slater / U.S. Air Force

Starting Monday, the city of Detroit is offering COVID-19 testing for essential workers who do not have symptoms of the disease.

Mayor Mike Duggan says the state fairgrounds drive-thru testing site has more capacity now that surrounding counties have expanded their own testing. 

Wearing scrubs and masks that dig deep ridges on their cheeks, working all day and all night tending to the sick in this global coronavirus pandemic, health care workers have been called to become our heroes.

Putting their own health and safety at risk, they work under unimaginable pressure, saving lives, offering comfort and carrying the grief over those who couldn’t be saved.

There's been a big jump in the number of Michiganders who've recovered from COVID-19.

To identify people who have recovered, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services reviews vital records statistics to identify any laboratory confirmed COVID-19 patients that are 30 days or more out from their onset of illness.

The numbers are updated weekly.  

RAWPIXEL

In a Thursday press conference, Henry Ford Hospital System’s chief clinical officer expressed measured confidence over the question of unstable drug supplies for COVID-19 patients. 

 

Dr. Betty Chu said the hospital system was “comfortable” with its current stock of sedatives, but acknowledged that maintaining it would be “an ongoing problem — especially if we see a second surge of patients.” 

 

A healthcare worker process a COVID-19 test at Beaumont.
Beaumont Health

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says the state has the capacity to process 9,500 COVID-19 tests a day. That’s between the state lab, commercial labs, and labs in hospital systems.

3D rendering of coronavirus
donfiore / Adobe Stock

Michigan has passed another grim milestone in its battle with COVID-19.

State officials Thursday confirmed that more than 2,000 people have died from COVID-19 in Michigan.

Michigan’s coronavirus death toll now stand at 2,093 after state health officials added another 172 fatalities on Thursday.

As Michigan fights coronavirus, hospitals gush money and workers lose jobs

Apr 16, 2020
doctors performing surgery
ake1150 / Adobe Stock

Even as the coronavirus pandemic roils Michigan's hospitals — sickening employees, inundating intensive care units and overflowing morgues — health systems are laying off other employees by the hundreds.

The hospitals, and hospital experts, blame declining revenues from lost patient office visits and postponed medical procedures unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic, such as knee or hip replacements, for the layoffs and pay cuts.

Someone dialing 911 on a smart phone
Adobe Stock

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and local health departments will be contacting those who test positive for COVID-19, as well as anyone those people may have had contact with. Health departments across the state, including 130 employees from the MDHHS trained to help these departments, are attempting to gather information on the spread of the virus.

The state of Michigan is expanding testing criteria for suspected COVID-19 cases.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has announced it is expanding testing criteria for COVID-19 to include individuals with mild symptoms.

Beaumont Health

Beaumont Health is launching what it believes to be the largest study in the country to date to test people for COVID-19 antibodies.

The serological blood-testing study looks to answer some crucial questions about the body’s immune response to COVID-19, including: how much immunity does having had COVID-19 provide? And how long does that immunity last?

coronavirus symptoms sheet
Adobe Stock

As Michigan nears the predicted apex of the coronavirus pandemic, some areas of the state have faired far better than hard-hit Southeast Michigan and Detroit. But the whole state won’t peak at the same time. For outstate areas like Ingham County—with 254 cases and a population of more than 290,000 –it’s virtually impossible to predict when cases of COVID-19 will peak, and how long life here may be disrupted.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Sunday’s single-day COVID-19 deaths and numbers of positive cases in Michigan were both down, but state officials say the numbers may not be “significant.”

The number of positive cases confirmed on Sunday (645) was just over half that of Saturday (1,210). And the number of deaths (95) from COVID-19 reported in Michigan on Sunday was less than half the number reported on Friday (205).

The vast majority of the country is under lockdown right now. But stay-at-home orders come with a few exceptions — like grocery shopping.

Many of us are still venturing out to stock up on food and toiletries. But what's the safest way to shop during this pandemic? And what should you do once you've brought your haul home?

We asked infectious disease, virology and food safety experts to share their tips about safe grocery shopping — and what you can stop worrying about.

Know the dangers — focus on the people, not the food

MICHIGAN.GOV

On Thursday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that the TCF Center would begin accepting its first 25 COVID-19 patients.

The announcement also stated that Henry Ford Health System, Beaumont Health, McLaren Health and Detroit Medical Center would be stepping in to provide administrative support, and that a FEMA strike team would provide initial staffing.

Paulette Parker / Michgian Radio

Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a plan on Saturday to open or expand 13 COVID-19 drive-thru testing sites. Some of the sites will being operating Monday.

Whitmer says the sites will provide greater access to testing across Michigan and a new lab will speed up test results.

“Better access to testing and quicker results are critical to our public health officials who are fighting coronavirus,” says Whitmer. “More testing will save lives.”

Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

An extended "stay at home" order by Governor Gretchen Whitmer bans keeping garden sections of stores open for businesses with more than 50,000 square feet. But many nurseries and garden centers contacted by Michigan Radio are interpreting the rule as a ban on selling fruit and vegetable plants. Workers at greenhouses and nurseries say it's confusing and makes no sense.

The governor wants people to restrict their trips from home to getting the essentials such as fuel and food. Large retail garden centers have been ordered to close temporarily.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The state of Michigan has agreements from nearly all of the state’s health insurance companies to waive patient costs tied to COVID-19 testing and treatments.

The agreements cover copays, deductibles and coinsurance for coronavirus treatment that includes testing, primary care and emergency room visits, ambulance rides and FDA approved vaccines and medications when they’re available.

Ascension Borgess Hospital
Imzadi1979 / Wikimedia Commons

The health care system Ascension Michigan has issued an updated staff re-assignment policy to its medical workers.

Ascension sent the policy to the Michigan Nurses Association and MNA shared it with Michigan Radio.

The city of Detroit is stepping up its COVID-19 testing of the homeless.

As of Thursday, 13 Detroit homeless men and women have tested positive for the disease, with more than a dozen others awaiting test results.

JODI WESTRICK/MICHIGAN RADIO

A major healthcare network, Ascension Michigan, will be working with health department officials to run Michigan’s second field hospital for COVID-19 patients, according to a Tuesday press release from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s office. 

Lakeland Correctional Facility sign
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

A second inmate in a Michigan prison has died of COVID-19

This death is an urgent concern, say advocates.  That's because it happened in a prison that houses many elderly inmates with chronic health conditions.  

The Michigan Department of Corrections says the inmate at Lakeland Correctional in Coldwater was taken to the hospital after testing positive for COVID-19, where he died on April 7. 

Emergency room hospital
Pixabay

Michigan is in desperate need of more nurses and other health care workers to handle the surge of coronavirus patients filling Detroit-area hospitals. Staffing is a real problem right now, and two field hospitals in development haven’t even opened yet. We talked to Michigan Radio reporter Kate Wells and producer Will Callan about the options health care workers are weighing right now, and how hospitals might deal with shortages. 

Workers set up a field hospital at the TCF Center in Detroit.
Paulette Parker, Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, Michigan’s healthcare system is facing major staffing challenges, as exhausted, under-equipped nurses consider their options. Plus, we take a deeper look at the longstanding health inequities fueling the disproportionate impact COVID-19 is having on African Americans. 

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