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steve carmody / Michigan Radio

State environmental officials say tests along the Tittabawassee and Saginaw Rivers are not showing recent floods caused dioxin and other contamination to spread.

In May, heavy rains and dam failures created a 500-year-flood in Midland County, including areas with histories of contamination from Dow Chemical.

Syringe
VCU CNS / Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Community organizations can now request free naloxone through a web portal launched by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Naloxone, also known by the brand name Narcan, is a medication used to prevent opioid overdoses in an emergency. 

Courtesy of Jonathan Marko

The family of Cornelius Fredericks, a 16-year-old boy in foster care who died after being improperly restrained by youth facility staff, filed a lawsuit on Monday against the facility’s parent company.   

Update: Wednesday, June 24 at 9:00 p.m.   

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

A judge Friday ordered an Owosso barber to shut his doors.

Karl Manke reopened his barbershop earlier this month, saying he could no longer afford to stay closed. By cutting hair at his barbershop in Owosso, Manke has become a hero for those opposed to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s stay at home order.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The number of Michiganders who have officially “recovered” from COVID-19 has more than doubled in the past week

State health official released data Saturday showing the number of recovered cases has risen to 8,342.  The state listed 3,237 “recovered” cases last Saturday and 433 two weeks ago.

The state of Michigan is expected to soon start releasing more information on the number of COVID-19 cases in specific nursing homes.

Hundreds of nursing home residents have tested positive for the disease in Michigan.

Melissa Samuel is the president of the Health Care Association of Michigan. She does not expect publicizing the numbers will “stigmatize” hard hit nursing homes.

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The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says it will release information about COVID-19 cases and deaths at long-term care facilities, including nursing homes and assisted living centers.

MDHHS is now requiring long-term care to give daily updates regarding their current bed availability and their personal protective equipment inventory along with the current number of COVID-19 cases and deaths within their facility.

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.  

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.

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.

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).

Michigan has crossed another grim milestone in the COVID-19 outbreak.

For the first time, more than 100 Michiganders have died from the disease in a 24-hour period.

State health officials reported Monday an additional 110 people have died of coronavirus. A big leap from the 77 deaths reported Sunday.

Gretchen Whitmer
Michigan.gov

Michigan’s healthcare systems have been hit hard by the Covid-19 crisis, especially those in the metro-Detroit area. So Governor Gretchen Whitmer is calling on medical professionals and everyday citizens to volunteer their talents and time to assist hospitals in fighting COVID-19.

Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services launched a new volunteer website where trained medical professionals can sign up and find out how to help their local communities.

Illustration of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says three patients in state psychiatric facilities have tested positive for COVID-19.

Two of the positive cases are patients at the Walter Reuther Psychiatric Hospital in Westland and one is at the Center for Forensic Psychiatry in Saline.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The current flu season has turned deadly for two Michigan children.

They are the first pediatric flu fatalities of the current influenza season.

vaping product
Pixabay

Michigan has recorded its third vaping-related death.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says the unidentified adult male died December 19th.

No specific brand of vaping device or e-liquid has been identified as the source of the severe lung damage. Federal health officials have linked an ingredient (Vitamin E acetate) in black-market THC vapes to some cases of severe lung damage.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The state of Michigan is starting an overhaul of technology used by its child welfare system that critics say is long overdue.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is replacing the current Michigan Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System. 

Haley Lawrence / Unsplash

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has announced that beginning this week, it will remove prior authorizations for medications that are used to treat opioid abuse disorders.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

The state of Michigan has reported its first decline in overdose deaths in six years.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says overall overdose deaths declined by 3.2% in 2018. 

Opioid-related fatal overdoses also declined. The decline in opioid-related overdose deaths in 2018 was largely driven by decreases in the number of deaths due to poisoning by heroin and commonly prescribed drugs, including oxycodone and hydrocodone.

three mexican gray wolf pups
Courtesy of the Binder Park Zoo

Tests confirm two Mexican gray wolf pups at southern Michigan zoo have died of a rare mosquito-borne virus as health officials work to curb the spread of the virus in people and animals.

Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek says results received this week confirm the pups that died in early September were killed by Eastern equine encephalitis, which is also known as Triple-E. The two wolves were part of a litter born June 14 to a breeding pair of wolves at the zoo. The one wolf pup who survived appears healthy and is being monitored along with her parents. 

a mosquito filled with blood on the tip of a human finger
User: Oregon State University / Flickr CC / http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

The state health department is considering the use of pesticides in areas that are affected by Eastern Equine Encephalitis, also known as Triple-E. It's a mosquito-borne virus that can be fatal for people.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has reached out to local health officials in areas affected by the virus.

PFAS foam on lakeshore
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality / Flickr http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

The federal government is launching a new study to examine the link between drinking water contaminated with industrial chemicals called PFAS and health outcomes.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry announced the start of the health study this week.

The agencies are giving grants to several institutions around the country to study PFAS exposure.

"Do Not Eat" advisory for deer in Oscoda still in effect

Sep 20, 2019
Lester Graham / Michigan Radio

With hunting season in Michigan beginning October 1, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services are reminding hunters about the “Do Not Eat” advisory for deer taken within 5 miles of Clark’s Marsh in Oscoda Township.

The advisory was originally issued in October of 2018, after venison was tested and found to have extremely high levels of PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonic acid), the most common chemical in the PFAS family. 

woman blowing out smoke from e-cigarette
pavel_shishkin / Adobe Stock

The number of cases of suspected respiratory illnesses connected to vaping continues to climb in Michigan.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services says there are now a dozen confirmed or probable cases of severe lung disease associated with vaping. The department is investigating another 14 possible cases.

Adobe Stock

State health officials are launching an investigation into vaping.  They are looking for a possible link to a serious respiratory illnesses.

Microscope
Pixabay.com

Cases of a rare form of gonorrhea have spiked in West Michigan, officials say. Disseminated gonococcal infection (DGI) is a form of gonorrhea that affects many parts of the body.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services will receive a $1.66 million federal grant to help fund the Michigan Pediatric Epilepsy Project. The four-year grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration will provide about $416,000 each year to the project, which provides comprehensive care to children with epilepsy in Michigan. The grant is focused in particular on improving health outcomes for pediatric epilepsy patients in rural and underserved areas.

A mosquito
flickr user trebol-a / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is urging residents to protect themselves from mosquito bites.

That's after cases of Eastern Equine Encephalitis -- or Triple E -- were confirmed in animals in Kalamazoo, St. Joseph and Cass counties.

The disease is transmitted from horses and deer to humans through mosquito bites.

“Use mosquito repellant, maybe even wear some long sleeves if you can,” said MDHHS spokeswoman Lynn Sutfin. “Also, check your doors and your screens. Try and make sure those mosquitos are staying outside of your home.”

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

State health department officials say the state of Michigan should keep a psychiatric center in the Thumb open, but scrap plans for a major expansion.

The Caro Center has been operating for more than a century in Tuscola County. Hundreds of people are employed at the center which provides psychiatric care to dozens of patients in a collection of aging buildings.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

State and local health officials are investigating multiple cases of a gastrointestinal illness in southwest Michigan. caused by a microscopic parasite in southwest . 

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