As national surge wanes, Michigan COVID-19 hospitalizations hit 6-month high: 7 notes

COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations have fallen nationwide in recent weeks, but many hospitals in Michigan are still responding to record high patient levels.

"We have not seen a decline in cases. We have not seen a decline in hospitalizations," Anurag Malani, MD, director of infection prevention for Ann Arbor, Mich.-based St. Joseph Mercy Health System, said in a Nov. 9 report from the Detroit Free Press. "In fact, actually, this week our numbers are probably the highest they have been in the delta surge."

Seven things to know:

1. COVID-19 hospitalizations in Michigan have jumped 15 percent in the past 14 days as of Nov. 11, according to data tracked by The New York Times. The state's hospitalization rate is 26 per 100,000, nearly double the national rate of 14 per 100,000.

2. As of Nov. 10, there were 2,573 adults and 48 children hospitalized for COVID-19 across the state, marking the highest daily tally seen since May 5, according to The Detroit News. Of these individuals, 622 were in intensive care and 347 were on ventilators, state data shows.

3. The state's current totals are similar to hospitalization levels seen last November, before vaccines were available. For example, on Nov. 10, 2020, there were 2,566 adults and 11 children hospitalized with COVID-19, The Detroit News reported.

4. Many hospitals and health systems in the state are struggling to keep up with the influx of patients — with and without COVID-19 — alongside staffing constraints. For the first time during the pandemic, Traverse City-based Munson Healthcare on Nov. 9 said it enacted level red pandemic protocols in response to an "overwhelming number of local cases beyond capacity of the healthcare system." At Grand Rapids-based Spectrum Health, length of stay has increased because patients are sicker, and "inpatient census is at record highs," the system's Communications Manager Patricia Ezdebski, told NBC affiliate WPBN.

5. The following eight hospitals were at 100 percent bed occupancy as of Nov. 10, state data shows:

  • Beaumont Hospital, Wayne
  • Bronson South Haven Hospital
  • Detroit Receiving Hospital
  • ProMedica Coldwater Regional Hospital 
  • ProMedica Monroe Regional Hospital
  • Sparrow Eaton Hospital (Charlotte)
  • Spectrum Health Reed City Hospital
  • St. Joseph Mercy Livingston Hospital (Howell)

6. The rising hospitalizations come as the Midwest braces for colder weather, which will cause more people to move indoors, where the virus spreads easier, according to the Detroit Free Press.

7. Public health officials and other healthcare leaders are urging state residents to get vaccinated or receive their booster dose if eligible ahead of the holiday season. About 54 percent of Michiganders were fully vaccinated as of Nov. 9. 


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