Michigan Health Watch

In-depth reporting on the intersection between public policy and important health topics ‒ such as insurance coverage, hospital admissions, opioid abuse, access to care, medical research and the business of health care ‒ that impact nearly every Michigan resident. 

Articles

Feds halt emergency use of coronavirus drug backed by Trump

Feds halt emergency use of coronavirus drug backed by Trump

June 15, 2020 | Robin Erb

Early hopes that hydroxychloroquine could help treat COVID-19 patients have been dashed by research that questions the drug’s efficacy and safety. It does not appear the FDA's ruling will impact a Michigan clinical trial.

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.

Coronavirus lays bare health disparities amid Michigan protests

Coronavirus lays bare health disparities amid Michigan protests

June 11, 2020 | Robin Erb

Some protesters in Michigan say they are focused on police brutality. Others see George Floyd’s death as “a crisis within crisis within a crisis,” with structural racism the common thread. 

Sinai-Grace nurses file lawsuit, allege patients died because hospital was short-staffed

Sinai-Grace nurses file lawsuit, allege patients died because hospital was short-staffed

June 11, 2020 | Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press

Sinai-Grace nurses: Dozens died because a Detroit hospital was short-staffed.

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.

Michigan hospitals reopen to visitors after coronavirus, but rules vary

Michigan hospitals reopen to visitors after coronavirus, but rules vary

June 9, 2020 | Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press

Here is what you need to know about resuming visits to Michigan hospitals following restrictions to stem the flow of the coronavirus.      

Northern Michigan braced for coronavirus surge that has yet to arrive

Northern Michigan braced for coronavirus surge that has yet to arrive

June 8, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer broadly reopened much of northern Michigan over the Memorial Day Weekend. More than two weeks later, few new COVID-19 cases have been confirmed across the region.

Inspections show death, despair gripped Michigan nursing homes amid pandemic

Inspections show death, despair gripped Michigan nursing homes amid pandemic

June 8, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting

As the coronavirus ravaged Michigan, nursing home staffers called in sick, faced equipment shortages and struggled to comply with infection controls, inspection reports from the hardest-hit facilities show. 

Michigan COVID-19 deaths swell, as state tweaks how it tallies cases

Michigan COVID-19 deaths swell, as state tweaks how it tallies cases

June 5, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

Michigan’s coronavirus caseload has increased by 240 to 5,800 now that “probable” deaths are included. The changing of definitions has caused controversy in other states.

Whitmer eases restrictions on hospital visits as coronavirus spread slows

Whitmer eases restrictions on hospital visits as coronavirus spread slows

June 3, 2020 | Sophia Yoon

Families will soon once again be able to visit their loved ones in Michigan hospitals, after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer rolled back restrictions put in place in March to tamp down the pandemic.

Insomnia, flashbacks hitting Michigan hospital workers as coronavirus ebbs

Insomnia, flashbacks hitting Michigan hospital workers as coronavirus ebbs

June 3, 2020 | Kate Wells, Michigan Radio, Kelly House

Burnout and suicide rates were already high among health care workers. Now, hospital systems and mental health providers are responding to trauma caused by the intensity of responding to COVID-19.

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.

Whitmer orders coronavirus protections for Michigan’s migrant farm workers

Whitmer orders coronavirus protections for Michigan’s migrant farm workers

June 2, 2020 | Meghanlata Gupta

They harvest much of the fruits and vegetables produced in Michigan. A new executive order will offer them some protections from COVID-19 while they work at farms across the state.

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.

Wanted: Michigan blood samples — lots of them — in fight against COVID-19

Wanted: Michigan blood samples — lots of them — in fight against COVID-19

May 29, 2020 | Robin Erb

A biobank at University of Michigan is collecting blood samples from both sick and healthy people as researchers search for clues to treatment and a vaccine.

Michigan’s Beaumont Health cancels merger with Ohio system, vague on why

Michigan’s Beaumont Health cancels merger with Ohio system, vague on why

May 29, 2020 | Robin Erb

Neither Beaumont nor Ohio-based Summa Health offered specifics on why the deal was nixed. Beaumont said, however, that its decision was unrelated to financial losses during the coronavirus crisis.

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.’

Nearly killed by COVID-19, Michigan doctors, nurses return humbled, smarter

Nearly killed by COVID-19, Michigan doctors, nurses return humbled, smarter

May 26, 2020 | Robin Erb

Two new studies suggest 1 in 100 health care workers involved in the care of coronavirus patients may have become infected themselves. Bridge Magazine spoke to some of them about how their experiences changed them.

Backlogged surgeries from coronavirus shutdown could take months to reschedule

Backlogged surgeries from coronavirus shutdown could take months to reschedule

May 22, 2020 | Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press

Catching up on backlogged appointments — like delayed mammograms, prostate exams, colonoscopies, knee and hip replacement surgeries, and other procedures — won't happen overnight, hospital officials warn.

Michigan appeals court sides with vape shop, against flavored vaping ban

Michigan appeals court sides with vape shop, against flavored vaping ban

May 21, 2020 | Robin Erb

The Michigan Court of Appeals panel upheld a trial court’s injunction against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency rules against flavored vaping products.

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