Below is an update on the 2019 Coronavirus outbreak as of 10:00 PM on 3/25/2020
- Yesterday, Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-25, which will allow pharmacists to dispense emergency refills of prescriptions for up to 60 days’ worth of supply for patients and require insurers to cover these emergency refills during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The order will also allow pharmacists to dispense COVID-19 treatments according to government-approved protocols.
“No Michigander should be worried about running out of critical medications during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is why I signed this Executive Order authorizing pharmacists to refill up to 60 days of medication for their patients and easing restrictions on pharmacists so they can continue to help their patients during this crisis,” said Governor Whitmer. “Residents who are limiting their time in public places and practicing social distancing shouldn’t have to fear running low on their prescription drugs during these trying times.”
- Governor Whitmer also signed Executive Order 2020-23, temporarily allowing the Michigan Employment Relations Commission, Unemployment Insurance Agency, and other administrative hearings to be held by video conference or phone in place of in-person hearings.
“Michigan’s workforce is making unprecedented sacrifices as we continue to fight the spread of COVID-19,” Governor Whitmer said. “Through video conferencing and other electronic means, this order will allow us to continue addressing disputes in the workplace and ensure we are meeting the needs of those filing for unemployment benefits during this challenging time.”
- Governor Whitmer clarified how the expansion of eligibility for unemployment benefits during the COVID-19 will work.
- Suspends the requirement for an individual seeking unemployment to request a registration and work search waiver from their employer;
- Allows anyone with an active unemployment claim to receive up to a six-week benefit extension.
- Expands cost-sharing with employers. Any benefit paid to a claimant that is laid off or placed on a leave of absence will not be charged to the employer’s accounts, but instead will be pooled and assumed by the Nonchargeable Benefits Component of employer accounts. Employers who unlawfully misclassify their workers and have underpaid their unemployment tax do not get the benefit of this enhanced cost-sharing.
“These are challenging times that all Michiganders are facing, and no one should be worried about how to make ends meet if they cannot work because of self-isolation or self-quarantine in response to contracting the coronavirus,” said Governor Whitmer. “I will continue to take action that protects public health, while also ensuring that working families have the support they need during these hard times.”
- To allow counties to complete their canvassing, the governor extended the deadline to complete the canvass of the March 10 primary to April 24.
“This important Executive Order ensures county canvassers have extra time to complete their work following the March 10 Presidential Primary and that state resources remain focused on addressing this public health crisis,” Governor Whitmer said. “The health and safety of seniors, families and children across the state remains our top priority and I urge residents to stay home and stay safe, continue practicing social distancing if they must leave their home, wash their hands for at least 20 seconds and avoiding touching their face to help stop the spread of COVID-19.”
- Yesterday, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that Michigan’s total cases is now 2,295.
- MDHHS also released a helpful guide to show Michiganders how to self-monitor if they believes they have been exposed to COVID-19:
- The governor remains committed to being transparent about the actions the state is taking to fight COVID-19. Tomorrow she will host a virtual town hall with Rick Albin at Wood TV 8. Be sure to tune in to listen to her answer Michiganders questions.
- Additionally the governor, MDHHS and the CDC are urging people to continue to take the following basic measures to prevent the spread of the virus:
- If you are experiencing symptoms of 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
- After her Consumer Protection intake lines were flooded with phone calls related to violations of the state’s new rules implemented as a result of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), Attorney General Dana Nessel is providing guidance on how to file complaints about individuals and businesses that aren’t complying with Governor Whitmer’s executive orders.
“These are unprecedented times and my office is working with Gov. Whitmer’s office, local law enforcement agencies and other parties to ensure these executive orders are being followed,” Nessel said. “The orders are in place to protect the public health and welfare of Michigan’s residents, and consequences will result to those found to be in willful violation. By working together through this public health emergency and staying home, we can help slow the spread of COVID-19 across the state.”
- The Michigan Department of Education announced yesterday it will request a federal waiver of statutory and regulatory requirements in the Child Nutrition Programs, in accordance with federal guidance. The waiver would allow MDE to maximize the reimbursement rates to support increased menu, supply, transportation, and labor options for sponsors that may be experiencing a disruption in access to food and other resources during this difficult time.
- The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Pure Michigan Business Connect program is expanding its free, online procurement platform by now including donations from suppliers capable of filling health and human service needs across a broad range of product and service categories. The platform will provide direct access to businesses within the state providing supplies including personal protection equipment, 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 and operational hardships resulting from coronavirus.”
- CDC Situation Updates
- Michigan Updates
- Map of country-specific travel health information
- About COVID-19
- COVID-19 Hotline 1-888-535-6136
- CNN: The next 5 governors to watch on coronavirus
- Upper Michigan’s Source: Gov. Whitmer Signs Executive Order temporarily allowing employment, other administrative hearings by video conference
- ABC 13: Whitmer extends deadline to complete canvass of state’s primary election
- Lansing State Journal: East Lansing schools use 3D printers to make masks for Sparrow medical staff fighting coronavirus
- WZZM: Gov. Whitmer calls on residents, businesses to donate medical supplies