Ted Roelofs

Ted Roelofs of Kentwood, has been a general assignment reporter at Bridge since 2012 and has written extensively on health care in that time as well as prison and juvenile justice reform. Roelofs spent nearly three decades at the Grand Rapids Press where he covered politics, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, rural poverty and mental illness among the homeless. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Reach Ted at ted.roelofs@gmail.com

Articles

Huge drop in Michigan vaccinations scares experts during coronavirus

Huge drop in Michigan vaccinations scares experts during coronavirus

July 8, 2020 | Ted Roelofs, Ron French

Michigan vaccinations in May were down 46 percent, raising health concerns about the flu and other illnesses. More troubling: rates for children 9 to 18 were down 66 percent, casting doubt on whether they will be allowed to enroll in school in the fall.

Michigan hospital: Our coronavirus test gives results in minutes, not days

Michigan hospital: Our coronavirus test gives results in minutes, not days

July 6, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Researchers at Beaumont Health say they are using technology they first developed to detect the zika virus. The test, which has yet to win FDA approval, is reliable, inexpensive and easier to administer, researchers say.

Michigan prison reform faces hurdles from Democrats Whitmer and Nessel

Michigan prison reform faces hurdles from Democrats Whitmer and Nessel

June 30, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

A group seeking to end mandatory minimum sentences is facing challenges from Michigan’s progressive governor and attorney general in it tries to get the issue on the November ballot. COVID-19 plays a pivotal role in the legal battle. 

Are Michigan gyms safe during coronavirus? A study in Norway suggests yes.

Are Michigan gyms safe during coronavirus? A study in Norway suggests yes.

June 26, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

A government study in May involving five indoor gyms in Oslo found that gym members practicing modest safety precautions did not increase the spread of COVID-19. Skeptics say they would like to see broader studies before accepting the findings.

Michigan auto, business groups pan Trump's halt on foreign workers

Michigan auto, business groups pan Trump's halt on foreign workers

June 23, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

President Trump’s suspension of visas during the coronavirus outbreak cuts off critical foreign supply, business and industry groups say. Backers of the order say it provides more openings for U.S. workers during an economic crisis.

As coronavirus drives remote learning, many Michigan students will suffer

As coronavirus drives remote learning, many Michigan students will suffer

June 23, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

An analysis of K-12 schools found huge numbers of low-income students in rural and urban areas lack Internet access or the computers needed for online education. Without equal access, achievement gaps are likely to grow.

More than 1,900 coronavirus deaths in Michigan nursing homes

More than 1,900 coronavirus deaths in Michigan nursing homes

June 15, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson, Ted Roelofs, Robin Erb

Michigan health officials finally announced the death toll for nursing homes and the results were sobering. Dozens of nursing homes had 20 deaths or more.

From couch potato to bike trails: a coronavirus silver lining in Michigan

From couch potato to bike trails: a coronavirus silver lining in Michigan

June 15, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Stir-crazy from quarantine, Michiganders are snapping up bicycles as fast as stores can stock them. Hunting and fishing license purchases are also up dramatically as residents find comfort and urgency in exploring more of the outdoors.

Michigan gives no coronavirus data on thousands of seniors and disabled

Michigan gives no coronavirus data on thousands of seniors and disabled

June 10, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

State health officials say they will finally reveal COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes. But this leaves out tens of thousands of vulnerable residents at homes for the aged, adult foster care and unlicensed assisted-living facilities.

What police have learned, or not, about how to defuse mass protests

What police have learned, or not, about how to defuse mass protests

June 5, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Heated demonstrations against police violence, and police reaction to them, have created tense moments and fatal encounters between police and protesters. Here are some proven tactics for police to turn down the temperature.

What is my future? How Michigan teens and young adults deal with isolation

What is my future? How Michigan teens and young adults deal with isolation

June 3, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Experts expect a wave of mental health issues for adolescents and young adults following months of quarantine during the coronavirus crisis.

White cops in black communities underscore tension in Michigan protests

White cops in black communities underscore tension in Michigan protests

June 1, 2020 | Riley Beggin, Ted Roelofs, Mike Wilkinson, Ron French

Police departments in several Michigan cities have a lower share of African-American officers than the communities they serve, leading to some scars that have yet to heal. 

Michigan continues to stumble in tracking coronavirus in nursing homes

Michigan continues to stumble in tracking coronavirus in nursing homes

May 30, 2020 | Robin Erb, Jonathan Oosting, Ted Roelofs

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services acknowledges its count of nursing home COVID-19 cases is likely inaccurate. And the agency still cannot accurately list how many senior residents have died from virus complications.

Michigan nursing homes linked to 1 in 4 coronavirus deaths. Tally will grow.

Michigan nursing homes linked to 1 in 4 coronavirus deaths. Tally will grow.

May 27, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting, Robin Erb, Ted Roelofs

As questions swirl about transparency of Michigan nursing home data, a Democratic lawmaker slams Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s policies that required homes to accept COVID-19 patients as an ‘epic fail.’

For some Michigan sheriffs, Gov. Whitmer’s coronavirus orders are optional

For some Michigan sheriffs, Gov. Whitmer’s coronavirus orders are optional

May 22, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

At least a half-dozen sheriffs have resisted Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive orders during the coronavirus crisis; some belong to a national group that says sheriffs are the final authority on the constitution within their county. 

Coronavirus has spared the Keweenaw Peninsula but may kill summer tourism

Coronavirus has spared the Keweenaw Peninsula but may kill summer tourism

May 18, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Untouched until now by COVID-19, this Upper Peninsula tourist haven needs thousands of downstate visitors to keep its economy alive. The opening of restaurants and bars may not be enough to save many of its businesses.

Anti-vaccine and conspiracy activists tied to Lansing coronavirus protests

Anti-vaccine and conspiracy activists tied to Lansing coronavirus protests

May 13, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting, Ted Roelofs

Protest organizers include at least six people connected to the “medical freedom” movement, with some promoting conspiracies about the pandemic and vaccine testing. The protest comes as health officials report steep declines in child immunization rates in Michigan.

Independent doctors’ offices in Michigan under threat from coronavirus

Independent doctors’ offices in Michigan under threat from coronavirus

May 13, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Financial pressures from the pandemic could spell the end of more  independent medical practices in Michigan, which critics fear will result in less personalized care and fewer doctors in rural regions.

With higher suicide risk during coronavirus, Michigan makes plans to help

With higher suicide risk during coronavirus, Michigan makes plans to help

May 5, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Mental health advocates highlight a rise in anxiety from the pandemic and economic disruption in Michigan, as experts devise ways to help health care workers and ordinary residents in an extraordinary time.

With weeks to plan, Grand Rapids learns from Detroit’s coronavirus surge

With weeks to plan, Grand Rapids learns from Detroit’s coronavirus surge

April 30, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

West Michigan hospitals say they are ready as a spike in COVID-19 cases hit the region. Hospital executives are implementing techniques picked up from Chicago and Detroit to improve the odds faced by desperately-ill patients.

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