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Military physicians staying at Covenant HealthCare for another month

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Covenant HealthCare

Covenant HealthCare in Saginaw

A team of military doctors, registered nurses and respiratory therapists joined the staff at Covenant HealthCare in Saginaw for about 30 days.

SAGINAW, Mich. (WJRT) - A military medical team will continue helping treat patients at Covenant HealthCare in Saginaw for an additional month.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Wednesday that military doctors, nurses and respiratory therapists sent to Covenant, Beaumont Hospital in Dearborn and Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids were extended for 30 more days.

The teams started treating patients at the three hospitals in December and were scheduled to stay for a single 30-day term, but they were extended for a second 30-day term.

Military medical team helps relieve overwhelmed Saginaw hospital

Whitmer also announced that Michigan's fourth military medical team will be sent to Mercy Health in Muskegon next week. All four hospitals are treating high numbers of COVID-19 patients, along with 

“As the Omicron variant quickly becomes the dominant strain of COVID-19 across the United States, I am grateful to our federal partners for their continued support that is providing much-needed relief to Michigan's hospitals and health care personnel,” Whitmer said.

As of Monday, Covenant HealthCare was operating at 98% patient capacity with 96 COVID-19 patients, including 17 in intensive care.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Elizabeth Hertel again asked residents to get a COVID-19 vaccine and remain current on their boosters when eligible.

So far in 2021, 85.1% of people who tested positive for COVID-19, 88.1% of people hospitalized with the illness and 85.5% of people whose deaths were attributed to the coronavirus were not fully vaccinated.

“The pandemic continues to take a tremendous toll on our health care workers and we are pleading with all Michiganders to do their part to support our state’s health care workers by getting vaccinated, wearing a mask in public indoor settings regardless of vaccination status, social distancing and staying home and getting tested regularly," Hertel said.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is asking residents to carefully consider where they seek health care services for non-emergency issues. People are asked to visit their doctor's office, an urgent care clinic or schedule a virtual appointment rather than visiting an emergency room when possible.

Hospital emergency rooms across Michigan are straining to keep up with high demand for services.

However, the state health department said anyone facing an emergency such as stroke symptoms, difficulty breathing, chest pain, a significant injury or uncontrolled bleeding should still seek hospital emergency room care immediately.

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