Michigan Medicine restricts visitors for adult patients as COVID-19 cases climb

ANN ARBOR – Michigan Medicine has updated its visitor policy with tightened restrictions in order to keep patients and staff safe as COVID-19 cases surge around the state.

As of Wednesday, no visitors will be permitted with adult patients in the health system’s hospitals, unless medically necessary.

Exceptions to the new restrictions include end-of-life care, labor and delivery and other scenarios which are listed here.

According to Michigan Medicine, the new policy change includes restrictions already announced:

  • No visitors are allowed with adult emergency department patients, except when medically necessary.
  • At C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, two visitors are allowed for pediatric patients. But family and other visitors are required to wear a mask (covering their mouth and nose) at all Michigan Medicine properties. This includes in a patient room and throughout the facility. Patients who can tolerate a mask must wear one when a health care worker is present in their room.
  • In clinics, no visitors will be allowed for adult patients unless the patient has a cognitive or physical impairment that requires assistance. One primary caregiver is allowed to accompany each pediatric patient to an appointment, unless an additional aide or assistant is required.

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“COVID-19 transmission rates continue to climb in the community,” Laraine Washer, Michigan Medicine’s medical director of infection prevention and epidemiology said in a statement. “Our top priority is the safety of our patients and staff, and to minimize the spread of disease, we need to take this additional step.

“We know this is difficult for our patients and their families and friends. But we need to continue to keep our Michigan Medicine facilities safe for all of our patients.”

Since the pandemic began in March, Michigan Medicine has been taking steps to keep staff and patients safe, including screening patients for symptoms, cleaning and disinfecting facilities, moving furniture to observe social distancing and following the latest guidelines to minimize infections.

“Limiting the risk of transmission of infection has always been a critical priority at Michigan Medicine,” Washer said in a statement. “And I want to reassure the public that if you need health care for a new problem or for continuing care of a chronic problem, you should not put it off.

“We have teams dedicated to keeping our patients and staff safe in our buildings. It is important to not delay emergency or chronic care.”

Washer urged people to avoid Thanksgiving gatherings this year with those outside your household.

“The best advice to limit risk is to continue to avoid gathering with people outside your household even if it is Thanksgiving,” she said in a statement. “If you are reporting to work, don’t have potlucks or share meals in close proximity with your co-workers: you can’t eat without taking off your mask, and that brief period of not wearing a mask could be enough to open the door to disease spread.

“We need everyone’s help with this. A large surge of

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The Latest: Cases Climb, Protests Break Out in Spain | World News

MADRID — Spain’s total number of COVID-19 infections has climbed to more than 1,240,000, but the government said Monday it won’t be introducing stricter lockdown conditions for now.

Over the weekend, a spate of violent protests in a dozen cities were held in response to a nightly curfew introduced last week in Spain. Mostly young protesters set fire to vehicles and trash cans, blocked roads and threw objects at riot police.

Spain’s Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, José Luis Escrivá told Antena 3 television Monday that “this kind of behavior is to be expected” as people grow weary of restrictions against the spread of COVID-19.

The Health Ministry reported just over 55,000 new cases in Spain since it last published official figures on Friday. More than 36,000 people have died in Spain since the pandemic began.

Asturias, a region on the north coast, asked the national government to order people in the province to stay at home for two weeks.

The Health Ministry refused, saying it is waiting to see the results of the central government’s latest restrictions, introduced last week. A strict lockdown from March to June brought down the number of cases but hit the economy hard.

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— America stands at a crossroads the day before Election Day, facing a stark choice between candidates in the midst of historic pandemic

— U.S. hospitals are scrambling to hire more nurses as the coronavirus pandemic surges, leading to stiff competition and increased costs.

— Germany kicks off a partial lockdown, as several European countries tighten restrictions this week

— The BBC says Britain’s Prince William had the virus in April, around the same time as his father Prince Charles

— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

GENEVA — A top World Health Organization scientist focusing on the coronavirus response says there has been no transmission or clusters at the agency’s Geneva headquarters.

Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s technical lead on the COVID-19 pandemic, made the comments to reporters after the U.N. agency’s chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, announced that he was starting a self-quarantine after coming into contact with a person who tested positive for the virus.

“I am well and without symptoms, but will self quarantine in the coming days in line with WHO protocols,” Tedros said via video conference from his home during a regular WHO news conference on Monday.

Van Kerkhove said the agency was tracking all cases among staff and carrying out contact tracing to ensure that transmission wasn’t taking place at its Geneva headquarters.

“We haven’t had any transmission take place on the premises, and we have no clusters on the premises,” she said. “But it is something that we’re monitoring every day.”

O’FALLAN, Mo. — Missouri hospital leaders are raising alarms about bed capacity as coronavirus cases continue to spike, with some urging Gov. Mike Parson to issue a statewide mask mandate.

Meanwhile, an eastern

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Cases climb, protests break out in Spain

MADRID — Spain’s total number of COVID-19 infections has climbed to more than 1,240,000, but the government said Monday it won’t be introducing stricter lockdown conditions for now.

Over the weekend, a spate of violent protests in a dozen cities were held in response to a nightly curfew introduced last week in Spain. Mostly young protesters set fire to vehicles and trash cans, blocked roads and threw objects at riot police.

Spain’s Minister for Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, José Luis Escrivá told Antena 3 television Monday that “this kind of behavior is to be expected” as people grow weary of restrictions against the spread of COVID-19.


The Health Ministry reported just over 55,000 new cases in Spain since it last published official figures on Friday. More than 36,000 people have died in Spain since the pandemic began.

Asturias, a region on the north coast, asked the national government to order people in the province to stay at home for two weeks.

The Health Ministry refused, saying it is waiting to see the results of the central government’s latest restrictions, introduced last week. A strict lockdown from March to June brought down the number of cases but hit the economy hard.

___

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— America stands at a crossroads the day before Election Day, facing a stark choice between candidates in the midst of historic pandemic

— U.S. hospitals are scrambling to hire more nurses as the coronavirus pandemic surges, leading to stiff competition and increased costs.

— Germany kicks off a partial lockdown, as several European countries tighten restrictions this week

— The BBC says Britain’s Prince William had the virus in April, around the same time as his father Prince Charles

___

— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

___

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

GENEVA — A top World Health Organization scientist focusing on the coronavirus response says there has been no transmission or clusters at the agency’s Geneva headquarters.

Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s technical lead on the COVID-19 pandemic, made the comments to reporters after the U.N. agency’s chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, announced that he was starting a self-quarantine after coming into contact with a person who tested positive for the virus.

“I am well and without symptoms, but will self quarantine in the coming days in line with WHO protocols,” Tedros said via video conference from his home during a regular WHO news conference on Monday.

Van Kerkhove said the agency was tracking all cases among staff and carrying out contact tracing to ensure that transmission wasn’t taking place at its Geneva headquarters.

“We haven’t had any transmission take place on the premises, and we have no clusters on the premises,” she said. “But it is something that we’re monitoring every day.”

___

O’FALLAN, Mo. — Missouri hospital leaders are raising alarms about bed capacity as coronavirus cases continue to spike, with some urging Gov. Mike Parson to issue a statewide mask

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COVID-19 Cases Continue To Climb In Chicago Heights

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, IL — October is officially behind us, but COVID-19, not so much. The pandemic has been upon us for over seven months and cases continue to rise here in Illinois.

Indoor dining at restaurants in nearly every region in Illinois was put on pause last week, as state public health officials announced new restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Indoor service at bars and restaurants in suburban Cook County are now off-limits, all outdoor eating or drinking has to stop by 11 p.m. and gatherings are limited to a maximum of 25 people.

This action marks the first time the additional mitigation measures are applied to suburban Cook County. Similar restrictions are already in place in Regions 7 and 8, including DuPage, Kane, Kankakee and Will counties.

Johns Hopkins University and Medicine reports there have been a total of 46,509,232 COVID-19 cases around the world— as of Nov. 1. Over nine-million of those cases are here in the United States.

As of Oct. 30, Cook County has had a total of 76,070 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the Cook County Department of Public Health. Cook has also reported 2,062 deaths since the start of the pandemic, and a 9.2 percent test positivity rate in the last week.

Here in Chicago Heights, the public health department reported 76 new cases in the past week. Chicago Heights has had a 3.21 percent increase in confirmed cases in the past 14 days, according to the Cook County Department of Public Health. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the city has had 1,313 confirmed cases, the health department reports.

Hospitalizations and Equipment

Across suburban Cook County, the positivity rate and the rate of hospital admissions has been rising sharply. The Illinois Department of Public Health reported that there are 3,294 people across Illinois in the hospital for COVID-19 or are under investigation. About 14 percent of hospital beds are being occupied by these patients and 692 of these patients are in the ICU, as of Oct. 31.

Illinois occupies a total of 5,702 ventilators and the IDPH reports 21 percent of COVID patients in hospitals are on ventilators. IDPH said 77 percent of the state’s ventilators are available.

Cases By Race/Ethnicity

In suburban Cook, the public health department reports case rates per 100,000 people to mostly affect the Hispanic/Latino community. Based off a group of 100,000 people, 3,994 of those individuals are Hispanic/Latino.

In addition, 2,603 of these individuals are Black, 1,382 are Asian and 1,405 are white, the department reports.

Hospitalization rates per ethnicity fluctuates. Per 100,000 people, 673 hospitalized patients are Black, according to the health department. Additionally, 397 patients are Hispanic/Latino, 272 are Asian and 241 are white, the department reports.

Cases By Age

The department reports a surge in COVID patients among people in their 20s. Based off a group of 100,000 people infected with the virus, 5,102 are in their 20s, according to the health department.

Just after

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October Coronavirus Cases Climb In Oak Lawn

OAK LAWN, IL — October is officially behind us, but COVID-19, not so much. The pandemic has been upon us for over seven months and cases continue to rise here in Illinois.

Indoor dining at restaurants in nearly every region in Illinois was put on pause last week, as state public health officials announced new restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Indoor service at bars and restaurants in suburban Cook County are now off-limits, all outdoor eating or drinking has to stop by 11 p.m. and gatherings are limited to a maximum of 25 people.

This action marks the first time the additional mitigation measures are applied to suburban Cook County. Similar restrictions are already in place in Regions 7 and 8, including DuPage, Kane, Kankakee and Will counties.

Johns Hopkins University and Medicine reports there have been a total of 46,509,232 COVID-19 cases around the world— as of Nov. 1. Over 9 million of those cases are here in the United States.

As of Oct. 30, Cook County has had a total of 76,070 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the Cook County Department of Public Health. Cook has also reported 2,062 deaths since the start of the pandemic, and a 9.2 percent test positivity rate in the last week.

A total of 2,067 cases have been reported in Oak Lawn. The county health department reported 102 new cases in Oak Lawn over the past 14 days. The village showed an 18.4 percent increase in confirmed cases as of Oct. 24, according to the Cook County Department of Public Health. Numbers are updated every Wednesday.

Across suburban Cook County, the positivity rate and the rate of hospital admissions has been rising sharply. The Illinois Department of Public Health reported that there are 3,294 people across Illinois in the hospital for COVID-19 or are under investigation. About 14 percent of hospital beds are being occupied by these patients and 692 of these patients are in the ICU, as of Oct. 31.

This article originally appeared on the Oak Lawn Patch

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As Covid cases climb, testing options grow. Here’s a look at what’s new.

If you are exposed to someone with Covid-19 and want to know if you caught it, your choices are much better than just a few months ago. You can go to urgent cares, retail pharmacies, doctors’ offices and private laboratories for a variety of tests and rapid results – a critical expansion of choices at a time when new cases are spiking in Florida and the U.S.

The state has ditched the slow-processing labs, secured quicker tests and cut wait times from the early months of the pandemic. Floridians will now find a range of choices on places to go, types of tests, and turnaround speed.

Earlier this week, Alex Morton found out at 5 p.m. his roommate had tested positive for the virus, and wanted to know if he could go to work the next day. Morton rushed to a nearby Fort Lauderdale urgent clinic open until 9 p.m., took a coronavirus test and learned he was negative the next morning. “It was a relief,” he said.

No appointment required

Many urgent care centers in South Florida offer evening hours for testing. Holy Cross Hospital operates urgent care centers in Fort Lauderdale and Coral Springs and says patients can get results with 8 to 10 hours.

If you’d rather test yourself at home, Quest Diagnostics and Labcorp, two of the nation’s biggest laboratories, will deliver collection kits to take a sample and send it back for processing. Quest charges $119 for the test.

Costco offers its members do-it-yourself Covid-19 tests that involve spitting into a small tube and sending it to a lab. For $129.99, you’ll get results 24-72 hours after the lab gets the test. For $10 more, you can get results 24-48 hours after the test arrives at the lab.

If you prefer drive-thru testing, Walmart, Walgreens and CVS, have it available at certain South Florida locations.

CVS Minute Clinics have begun to offer rapid tests with 30-minute results, but so far the nine Florida locations are in the central area of the state and the pharmacy hasn’t announced when they will be available in South Florida.

The state continues to run numerous walk-up and drive-thru testing sites in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade. Many are open seven days a week, but all close by 6 p.m. and some much earlier. Appointments are not required but some locations make them available.

Currently, the Hard Rock Stadium in North Miami-Dade County is the busiest, but not nearly as bad as the early days. “Anyone who wants a test can get one. We are not seeing the challenges of when we first started,” said Mike Jachle, chair of the Florida Association of Public Information Officers, which supports the state at the test sites.

Some cities like Miramar also have opened their own free test sites. Miramar’s self-administered saliva test given at Miramar Regional Park has a 48 hour turnaround time.

Anyone can get tested, for free

In most cases, you do not have to pay for a

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Belgian COVID cases climb as government mulls lockdown

FILE PHOTO: Medical personnel wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) arrive at the emergency unit of the CHU Dinant-Godinne hospital with a patient on a stretcher, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Mont-Godinne, Belgium October 28, 2020. REUTERS/Yves Herman

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Belgium, one of worst affected European countries by the new coronavirus, recorded an average of 15,316 new infections per day in mid-October, health officials said on Friday, hours before the government was due to consider a lockdown.

Home to the headquarters of the European Union and NATO, Belgium has one of the world’s highest fatality figures per capita from the virus and now, in the second wave, has one of the highest per capita rates of COVID-19 infections.

“We see no favourable change for the moment,” health ministry spokesman Yves Van Laethem told a news conference.

The 38% increase in confirmed cases for the Oct. 20-26 period compared to the previous week takes the total number of infections since the beginning of the outbreak to 392,258 in the country of 11 million people, according to data from the Sciensano health institute.

After implementing a night curfew, closing bars, restaurants, gyms and cultural spaces, Belgium’s federal government is set to decide on Friday whether to implement a nationwide lockdown following a similar move by France to try to contain the epidemic.

Hospital admissions in Belgium dipped slightly on Thursday to 673, from 743 patients hospitalised with the virus the day before, but the level is still above the peak of the first wave, Sciensano figures showed.

Reporting by Robin Emmott; Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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Coronavirus Live Updates: New Cases Climb Above 70,000

The world-wide total of confirmed coronavirus cases neared 44 million, with more than 1.16 million dead, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

India: New cases climbed, a day after dipping to the lowest daily level in more than three months. On Wednesday, India reported 43,893 new cases, as the total number neared eight million, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The country’s death toll rose by 508 to 120,010.

China: Health authorities reported 22 symptomatic, locally transmitted cases for Tuesday, the highest single-day increase since early August. The rise comes as a cluster of cases in the city of Kashgar, in the far-western region of Xinjiang has emerged. As of Tuesday, authorities said the city had identified a total of 183 coronavirus cases after completing a mass testing program.

Japan: Starting Nov. 6, Hawaii plans to allow travelers from Japan who test negative for the coronavirus to enter the state without a two-week quarantine. Hawaii is one of the most popular destinations for Japanese tourists. Travelers will still have to be tested and quarantine when they return to Japan, a Japanese Health Ministry official said. Japan on Wednesday reported 629 new cases, bringing the nation’s total to more than 98,100. The death toll stands at 1,730, including five additional fatalities logged Wednesday.

Australia: Victoria state recorded two new coronavirus cases and two deaths, as the capital, Melbourne, emerged from one of the world’s longest lockdowns. People flocked to the city’s bars and restaurants, some of which opened at midnight, when restrictions that have shuttered shops, cafes and hairdressers for months to stamp out a second wave were finally lifted.

Guam: Hospitalizations in Guam have risen to 81, the highest number since the pandemic began, adding more stress on the U.S. territory’s health-care system. Guam recorded 82 new cases, bringing the total to 4,418.

South Korea: The country added 103 cases, with many linked to clusters of infections at health-care facilities and other spots that have emerged in recent days. Health officials have ordered nightclubs in Seoul to close over Halloween weekend to avoid further potential spread of the virus.

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Covid cases continue to climb in almost every state, as U.S. braces for possible ‘third peak’

Texas, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands stand alone in recorded decreases in Covid-19 cases over the last two weeks, as the country braces for a possible “third peak” of the disease.

Although the Lone Star State reported a “slight decrease” in cases over a 14-day period that ended Saturday, its news was better than most: 38 states, Washington, D.C., and Guam are all seeing increases in cases over the past 14 days, and nine states have plateaued, according to NBC News tallies. Rhode Island, which like Texas has also seen a net decrease, does not report data over the weekend, and Missouri is not currently reporting data due to a technology issue.

In Vermont and New Mexico, cases have spiked, as both battle around a 117% spike in cases over the past two weeks.

“We are really struggling,” Dr. Todd Vento, director of the Telehealth Infectious Disease Program of Utah-based Intermountain Health, told NBC”s “TODAY” show. “People are doing heroic work, but they are really getting to the point where it’s going to be literally unsustainable.”

On Saturday, thousands of people, many without masks, attended a Trump rally in Janesville, Wisconsin, as health officials urge residents not to gather with anyone outside of their immediate families. The state, which does not release case counts over the weekend, saw a record 3,861 new cases on Friday, according to the state’s health department.

In North Dakota, a whopping 4% of the state has contracted Covid-19 since March, most of those cases coming within the last few weeks.

North and South Dakota lead the United States in weekly virus cases per capita, according to an NBC News tally, and ICUs are filling up across the state. According to the most recent data released by the North Dakota Department of Health, there are 16 ICU open beds in the state, just one in the capital city of Bismarck. The state, which does not have a mask mandate, only recommends that its residents cover their faces.

“You know, from my perspective, the mask mandate, it’s gonna be hard to enforce,” Kirby Kruger, the North Dakota director of Disease Control, said. “I think there’s a segment of the population that doesn’t want to do this…it’s not something that they feel that the government should be forcing on them.”

Gov. Doug Burgum has continued to stress individual responsibility as the state sees cases rise. “I think it’s important to the future of our state that we do understand there is something that is more powerful than an executive order — infinitely more powerful than a mandate — and these are the beliefs that individuals hold in their hearts,” he said in a press conference.

Burgum said he was “amazed” people were still debating the mask mandate because “there is no other way to get someone to wear a mask other than for that person to choose to do that.”

Texas, where illness is slightly declining, has seen more than 860,000 cases and almost 17,500

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Maryland Coronavirus Cases Climb By Nearly 800 In One Day

MARYLAND — Nearly 800 confirmed cases of the coronavirus were added to the count in Maryland in the past day, state health officials reported Saturday. On Oct. 1, there were more than 125,000 cases; as of Saturday, Oct. 17, there were more than 135,000.

Gov. Larry Hogan announced Friday that fans would again be allowed at sporting events in the state, including NFL games.

Both M&T Bank Stadium and FedEx Field may host crowds of up to 10 percent capacity.

“With our key health metrics low and stable, we are taking steps to allow more spectators,” Hogan said in a statement Friday. He said the positivity rate was stable, “cases per 100K have declined, and zero counties are in the federal government’s ‘red zone.'”

The positivity rate is at 3.15 percent on a seven-day rolling average, according to the Maryland Department of Health.

In the past two weeks, hospitalizations have risen by about 100; there were 323 people hospitalized with the virus as of Saturday, Oct. 3, and officials said there were 422 Saturday, Oct. 17.

Here is the data about the coronavirus in Maryland from the state health department as of Saturday, Oct. 17:

Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.
Courtesy of Maryland Department of Health.

This article originally appeared on the Baltimore Patch

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