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

Rural Michigan hospitals gutted by coronavirus, even those without cases

Rural Michigan hospitals gutted by coronavirus, even those without cases

April 23, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

A halt on elective surgeries cripples rural hospitals with few or no coronavirus patients.

A doctor, a miracle baby, and the fight to save dying coronavirus patients

A doctor, a miracle baby, and the fight to save dying coronavirus patients

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.

After her patients died alone, Detroit doctor raises money for tablets

After her patients died alone, Detroit doctor raises money for tablets

April 23, 2020 | Kate Wells, Michigan Radio

Dr. Luda Khait-Vlisides had to look through her patient’s phone to find his daughter’s number, so she could tell her her father had died. 

Detroit’s Henry Ford joins coronavirus red ink, furloughs 2,800 workers

Detroit’s Henry Ford joins coronavirus red ink, furloughs 2,800 workers

April 22, 2020 | Robin Erb, Kelly House

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.

Why Michigan hospitals are laying off workers as they battle coronavirus

Why Michigan hospitals are laying off workers as they battle coronavirus

April 22, 2020 | Brie Zeltner

Hospitals are overwhelmed by a flood of COVID-19 patients. But in the U.S. health care system, that’s not where hospitals make their profits.

Detroit hospital vows quality care but won’t discuss coronavirus issues

Detroit hospital vows quality care but won’t discuss coronavirus issues

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

DMC CEO Audrey Gregory said the Detroit-based system has invested meaningfully in medical education and hospital facilities. She would not talk about controversies that made headlines during the coronavirus surge.

Beaumont CEO says he's taking a 70% pay cut as layoffs sweep through administrative staff

Beaumont CEO says he's taking a 70% pay cut as layoffs sweep through administrative staff

April 21, 2020 | Jennifer Dixon, Detroit Free Press, Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press

With Michigan's largest hospital system "financially hemorrhaging" and under a cloud of uncertainty for at least the next two years, the CEO of Beaumont Health says he's taking a 70 percent cut to his base pay and is forgoing any bonuses.

Michigan to identify nursing homes infected by the coronavirus

Michigan to identify nursing homes infected by the coronavirus

April 21, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Michigan will follow roughly 18 other states in publicly identifying nursing homes and long-term care facilities stricken by the virus. Watchdog groups say that is critical information for residents and their families. 

Beaumont to lay off 2,475, eliminate 450 Michigan jobs due to coronavirus

Beaumont to lay off 2,475, eliminate 450 Michigan jobs due to coronavirus

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.

Michigan needs big boost in coronavirus testing to reopen economy

Michigan needs big boost in coronavirus testing to reopen economy

April 21, 2020 | Brie Zeltner , Robin Erb

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.

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

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

April 20, 2020 | Kelly House

Johnny Choi was logging two shifts a month as an extern at Novi’s Ascension Providence Hospital before the pandemic hit. Now, the 22-year-old nursing student is pulling long hours in a COVID-19 intensive care unit.

Michigan residents worry about going hungry as COVID layoffs surge, poll finds

Michigan residents worry about going hungry as COVID layoffs surge, poll finds

April 20, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting

More than 1 in 4 Michigan residents are worried about being able to put food on their table, and more than half of all laid-off or furloughed workers are unsure how they’ll feed their families, according to a new statewide poll conducted amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Last moments, small joys: Saving lives in Michigan coronavirus surge

Last moments, small joys: Saving lives in Michigan coronavirus surge

April 19, 2020 | Bridge, Detroit Free Press & Michigan Radio

Risking their health, these nurses, physicians and therapists face long hours, excruciating pressure and moments of heartbreaking intimacy with patients and families. They share some lessons learned.

Michigan may be past coronavirus peak, but cases grow outstate

Michigan may be past coronavirus peak, but cases grow outstate

April 18, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

The coronavirus is moving across the state at different rates, relaxing its grip on metro Detroit but infections are still rising in parts of the state as Gov. Gretchen Whitmer eyes the reopening of the economy.

The promise, and limits, of coronavirus antibody tests to reopen Michigan

The promise, and limits, of coronavirus antibody tests to reopen Michigan

April 18, 2020 | Brie Zeltner

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and other governors are relying on serological testing to help inform when they can safely lift or loosen state  stay-at-home orders. Bridge explains what researchers still don’t know.  

Amid coronavirus deaths, Michigan hospital chaplains struggle to carry on

Amid coronavirus deaths, Michigan hospital chaplains struggle to carry on

April 18, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Chaplains fight a daily battle against despair as they minister to patients, family and staff.

Seniors dying from coronavirus. Michigan still won’t name nursing homes

Seniors dying from coronavirus. Michigan still won’t name nursing homes

April 17, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

At least 17 states now list nursing homes infected by COVID-19. Michigan, where hundreds of nursing home residents have died, is not among them.

Back to work, but not to normal: life in Michigan when coronavirus ebbs

Back to work, but not to normal: life in Michigan when coronavirus ebbs

April 17, 2020 | Kelly House, Mike Wilkinson

You can go to work, but prepare to have your temperature taken at the door. You can visit your family, but not the bar. Baseball season may never start. A peek into your future when Michigan’s stay-home order ends.

Will U.S. drug supplies meet demand if Michigan hospitals see second surge?

Will U.S. drug supplies meet demand if Michigan hospitals see second surge?

April 17, 2020 | Will Callan, Michigan Radio

The drug shortage has hit Michigan unevenly. Hospitals are relatively comfortable now with their supply of drugs, but are concerned about another sharp rise in patients. In southeast Michigan, the shortage is already showing itself.

Wary of hospitals during coronavirus, some Michigan moms turn to midwives

Wary of hospitals during coronavirus, some Michigan moms turn to midwives

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.

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