Robin Erb, who leads health coverage for Michigan Health Watch, believes it is our personal stories that keep us connected on common ground, whatever the break-neck fragmentation of a digital world. A long-time journalist, Robin previously spent six years at the Detroit Free Press chronicling the fight against —and sometimes the triumph over— our most horrific diseases. Her award-winning stories chronicled the battle over the Affordable Care Act, state expansion of Medicaid, cutting-edge research led by Michigan’s hospitals and universities, deadly mistakes and extraordinary care in Michigan’s nursing homes, and a nearly forgotten mix-up of chemicals in cattle feed in the 1970s and its lingering effects today. She holds bachelor’s degrees in communications and political science from Miami University and a master’s in organizational leadership from Lourdes University (Toledo, Ohio). You can contact Robin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 734-725-1155.
Dow Chemical evacuates its Midland headquarters as dam breaches bring flooding to the complex’s containment ponds.
An Ingham County community health board said state and Lansing officials endanger public safety by not cracking down on anti-Whitmer protesters who do not follow restrictions intended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Police say they will take enforcement action when necessary.
May 10, 2020 | Robin Erb
Destroyed kidneys, ravaged lungs and liver — the coronavirus that nearly killed some patients leaves them struggling to do everyday tasks long after Michigan considers them ‘recovered.’
May 10, 2020 | Robin Erb
Michigan counts those “who are 30 days out from their onset of illness” as recovered. The definition reflects the disconnect between data and real life underscores both the shortcomings in reporting.
Hydroxychloroquine was touted early on as possible treatment for COVID-19 patients, but a growing body of research points to possibly deadly side effects
May 7, 2020 | Robin Erb
Some families turn to social media as doctors work the phones trying to find plasma donors among those who beat the virus, a treatment with early promise but for which proven benefits are not yet known.
May 5, 2020 | Robin Erb
Wayne State University School of Medicine’s new dean calls the action an “egregious” violation of the Detroit Medical Center’s mission. It’s the latest turn in a years’ long legal drama.
May 4, 2020 | Robin Erb
Michigan hospitals were forced to halt non-emergency surgeries and procedures as COVID-19 surged. The state is now blessing their decision to take patients with less urgent but “time-sensitive” cases.
May 3, 2020 | Robin Erb
At least five of the deaths were linked to the coronavirus, which tore through the convent. There were 60 to 70 sisters, many of them elderly, living at the convent prior to the pandemic.
May 2, 2020 | Robin Erb
The Felician Sisters, who founded Madonna University, schools, a hospice and hospital in Livonia, were hit by 22 cases of COVID-19. The order lost 11 sisters in 16 days, with at least five deaths tied to the virus.
April 30, 2020 | Robin Erb
Following trends nationwide, nearly half of all deaths from COVID-19 are in nursing homes in Oakland County. Now, first responders are going into senior centers to test residents and staff in an effort to get ahead of the pandemic.
April 28, 2020 | Robin Erb
He received convalescent plasma at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, one of 14 patients there receiving the experimental treatment. Early returns are promising but it’s far too early to know if it actually works.
April 26, 2020 | Robin Erb
Parents are avoiding health care settings for fear of coronavirus. But doing so, doctors say, puts a child’s health at risk with missed vaccinations, untended anxiety problems or life-threatening diseases that can develop undetected.
For much of April, coronavirus cases dropped consistently in Michigan. They are jumping upward again in the past few days as cases spread outstate. But experts also attribute the rise to more testing.
April 23, 2020 | Robin Erb
More than 40 years ago, a dying newborn and a doctor who ended up at the University of Michigan helped set the course for technology that today may be the last chance at survival for some COVID-19 patients.
The Detroit-based hospital system is the latest in a string of medical providers to announce deep staff cuts as the coronavirus pandemic dries up revenue streams.
April 21, 2020 | Robin Erb
Beaumont Health, the state’s largest health system, blamed the dramatic cuts on losses incurred during the pandemic, which forced it to cut revenue-generating procedures to handle the surge. CEO temporarily cuts his own pay 70 percent.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is under enormous pressure to loosen an economic lockdown by May 1. But by any national standard, the state must significantly improve COVID-19 testing to safely reopen for business.
April 17, 2020 | Robin Erb
Midwives, mostly paid out of pocket, say they could serve more women and better respond to a long-term pandemic if insurance companies would cover home deliveries.
From metropolitan health systems to independent rural hospitals, hospital budgets are taking big financial hits as surgeries and other money making medical procedures are put on hold.