Daily COVID Update 3/18/20

govcovidpressBelow is an update on the 2019 Coronavirus outbreak as of 6:00 PM on 3/18/2020                        

UPDATE 

  • Governor Whitmer, Chief Medical Executive Dr. Khaldun and Michigan State Police Director Colonel Gasper spoke about the state’s ongoing response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
  • Yesterday, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-14, extending the deadline for Michigan residents to pay back taxes and avoid foreclosure on their property during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

“This executive order will give families struggling to make ends meet real and immediate relief from the pressure of having their home foreclosed on while trying to focus on the health and safety of their loved ones,” Governor Whitmer said. “This order is the latest in a series of steps to protect the public, slow the spread of COVID-19 and give families comfort during these uncertain times.” 

  • Additionally, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-15 to order a temporarily change to the Open Meetings Act to allow public bodies to conduct their meetings electronically, while also facilitating public participation, until April 15, 2020 at 11:59PM.

“We are taking every measure we can to mitigate the spread of coronavirus and protect Michigan families, but recognize that public bodies still have an obligation to conduct business as usual,” Whitmer said. “During this crisis, we must ensure that public officials can do their job to meet the needs of residents, while also ensuring that meetings remain open, accessible and transparent to the public.”   

  • Yesterday morning, Governor Whitmer stopped by the Red Cross to donate blood. In light of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) they are in need of people who are able to donate blood.
  • Additionally the governor, MDHHS and the CDC are urging peopleto continue to take the following basic measures to prevent the spread of the virus: 

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.

 

HAPPENING ACROSS STATE GOVERNMENT 

  • The Department of Health and Human Services has announced several platforms and services to help Michiganders understand and have their questions answered regarding COVID-19. Each of these are great resources to stay informed. 

    COVIDhotlines

The Michigan Department of Treasury announced yesterday that  effective immediately, small businesses scheduled to make their tax payments on March 20 can postpone filing and payment requirements until April 20. The state Treasury Department will waive all penalties and interest for 30 days. 

“The past week has been hard for small businesses owners across the state as we work to mitigate the spread of coronavirus,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said. “Allowing them more time to pay their monthly tax payments will help us provide some much-needed assistance. I will continue doing everything I can to ensure our small businesses have the support they need during this time. We will get through this together.”

    • Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s

Pure Michigan Business Connect program is now offering a free, online procurement platform to assist suppliers of critical health and human services across a broad range of categories access critical supplies and products as they respond to the COVID-19 outbreak. The platform will make virtual introductions between vetted businesses within the state providing supplies including food, medical devices, paper products, cleaning equipment and more. 

“This virtual matchmaking platform builds on the significant success of PMBC in providing supply chain sourcing solutions by supporting critical COVID-19 response efforts, as well as creating opportunities for small and medium-sized Michigan businesses,” said MEDC CEO Mark Burton. “This is part of a comprehensive effort to ensure that every possible resource is made available to service providers, businesses, communities, entrepreneurs and others in the face of economic hardships resulting from coronavirus.”     

    • Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) announced that beginning at 3 p.m yesterday, it closed its lobbies to visits from the public, except for customers with appointments. These changes will remain effective as long as necessary for the health and safety of the public. 

 

RESOURCES 

 

MEDIA COVERAGE  

Detroit Free Press: Whitmer asks Michigan companies to make medical gowns, hand sanitizer to fight coronavirus

WOOD TV: Gov. Whitmer and Dr. Khaldun provide an update on coronavirus in Michigan

Detroit News: Whitmer: Patients in Michigan are ‘fighting for their lives’ as cases grow to 110 

MLive: Michigan at over 100 coronavirus cases, lack of tests still a concern, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says

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