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

Black communities hit harder by coronavirus in Michigan, not just Detroit

Black communities hit harder by coronavirus in Michigan, not just Detroit

April 1, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson, Riley Beggin

Communities with higher percentages of African Americans so far have been hit harder by the coronavirus in Michigan. Lawmakers want more data about victims to allocate resources, but some fear a backlash from publicizing the information.

You were told no mask if you don’t have coronavirus. That might be wrong.

You were told no mask if you don’t have coronavirus. That might be wrong.

March 31, 2020 | Robin Erb

As coronavirus spreads across Michigan and the nation, experts are rethinking the message that only those with symptoms of the illness need to wear a mask in public.

10 ways to help Michigan hospital workers during coronavirus pandemic

10 ways to help Michigan hospital workers during coronavirus pandemic

March 31, 2020 | Kathryn Dugal

You don’t need to be wealthy or even particularly active to thank the nurses, doctors and other medical workers risking their lives during this coronavirus pandemic. Here are some ways to help.

Why did coronavirus spread so fast in Michigan compared to neighbors?

Why did coronavirus spread so fast in Michigan compared to neighbors?

March 31, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson

Coronavirus came to Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin and Illinois at about the same time. All states adopted similar distancing measures, but Michigan by that time had far more coronavirus cases than its neighbors. Bridge explains in charts.

Facing shortages, Michigan asks feds for experimental coronavirus drugs

Facing shortages, Michigan asks feds for experimental coronavirus drugs

March 31, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting, Ted Roelofs

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration is “pursuing a request” for hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine from the federal government’s Strategic National Stockpile

In metro Detroit, coronavirus deaths spike overnight amid ventilator need

In metro Detroit, coronavirus deaths spike overnight amid ventilator need

March 30, 2020 | Robin Erb

Oakland County executive Dave Coulter issued a call for masks and ventilators at the beginning of what he called “the most challenging week yet.”

Michigan may need another 8,000 ventilators as coronavirus outbreak worsens

Michigan may need another 8,000 ventilators as coronavirus outbreak worsens

March 30, 2020 | Riley Beggin

Michigan’s top doctors says the state could need 10,000 ventilators and only has 1,700. The shortage is one of several Michigan officials are confronting as cases spike in southeast Michigan.

Coronavirus, an ‘almost perfect killing machine,’ hits Michigan nursing homes

Coronavirus, an ‘almost perfect killing machine,’ hits Michigan nursing homes

March 29, 2020 | Robin Erb

COVID-19  has breached the walls at Michigan nursing homes, where vulnerable residents are at risk because of tight quarters, a shortage of supplies and low-paid workers. In Macomb County, one home is begging for help.

Khaldun: Michigan has coronavirus testing supplies ‘through another week'

Khaldun: Michigan has coronavirus testing supplies ‘through another week'

March 28, 2020 | Robin Erb

State’s remains in “dire need” of supplies. For every infected patient, hospitals need 10 specialized N95 masks, Michigan’s chief medical executive, Joneigh Khaldun, told Bridge.

Detroit hospital: We’re nowhere near ‘worst-case’ coronavirus decisions

Detroit hospital: We’re nowhere near ‘worst-case’ coronavirus decisions

March 27, 2020 | Robin Erb, Kelly House

Henry Ford Health System reassures patients and public following the release of an ethics guideline that discusses who should get ventilators during the coronavirus pandemic. Other hospitals have similar policies.

For some recovering addicts, Michigan’s stay-home order sparks fear of relapse

For some recovering addicts, Michigan’s stay-home order sparks fear of relapse

March 27, 2020 | Ashley Wong

Michigan’s recovery community is scrambling to switch AA meetings online and to stagger appointments at methadone clinics, hoping to lesson in-person while still supporting recovering addicts and alcoholics.

Separated in their own home, a Michigan family adjusts to coronavirus

Separated in their own home, a Michigan family adjusts to coronavirus

March 27, 2020 | Robin Erb

A Canton Township family endures a week of sadness, frustration and surprising moments of joy after a diagnosis of COVID-19 and self-quarantine.

Detroit hospital warns some coronavirus patients may not get ventilators

Detroit hospital warns some coronavirus patients may not get ventilators

March 27, 2020 | Robin Erb, Kelly House

Guidelines by Henry Ford Health System are leaked onto social media detailing how the sickest patients may not get ventilator care. The draft letter outlines an ‘absolute worst-case scenario’ that hospital officials say has not yet come.

 Coronavirus spreading faster in Detroit than nearly anywhere in United States

Coronavirus spreading faster in Detroit than nearly anywhere in United States

March 25, 2020 | Sarah Alvarez, Anna Clark, Robin Erb, Mike Wilkinson

Detroit, which faces a host of challenges, is the ‘epicenter’ of Michigan’s coronavirus outbreak. Some attribute that to testing. Others say city residents are more susceptible. All agree the rise burdens folks who are already suffering.

Aging and isolated, rural northern Michigan braces for coronavirus

Aging and isolated, rural northern Michigan braces for coronavirus

March 24, 2020 | Kelly House

Alcona County has high rates of diabetes, heart disease and other illnesses and hardly a doctor in sight. Residents here are particularly susceptible to COVID-19, when it hits.

Rural Michigan hospitals say coronavirus crisis may soon force some to close

Rural Michigan hospitals say coronavirus crisis may soon force some to close

March 24, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Many small or rural hospitals were already struggling before COVID-19 forced them to halt the elective procedures that help pay the bills. They are looking largely toward the government to help them recover lost revenue.

How to give blood in Michigan during the coronavirus crisis

How to give blood in Michigan during the coronavirus crisis

March 24, 2020 | Ashley Wong

Hospitals report a shortage of blood with the cancellation of hundreds of blood drives across the state. At the same time, prospective donors say they have faced obstacles in getting an appointment. Follow this advice.

 As hospitals fill, Michigan eyes dorms and hotels for coronavirus patients

As hospitals fill, Michigan eyes dorms and hotels for coronavirus patients

March 24, 2020 | Riley Beggin

Michigan’s hospitals are becoming so overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients that officials are looking elsewhere for help. Even a Detroit velodrome is undergoing a deep clean in case it is needed.

Alarm grows as Michigan hospitals begin to fill with coronavirus cases

Alarm grows as Michigan hospitals begin to fill with coronavirus cases

March 23, 2020 | Robin Erb

Hospitals are still waiting on critical supplies and workers are concerned about staying safe as a surge in COVID-19 cases is anticipated across the state.

Stay at home, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says as coronavirus cases soar

Stay at home, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says as coronavirus cases soar

March 23, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting, Ron French

Residents are to stay at home except for workers in essential service sectors. Such orders in other states make allowances for hospitals, groceries, gas stations, take-out restaurants, pharmacies and the like to stay open.

Pages