First Patient Passes from COVID-19 at Henry Ford Allegiance Health

Jackson, Michigan—Henry Ford Allegiance Health has reported their hospital’s first patient death due to COVID-19. (Source: WILX)

JACKSON, MI (WILX) - Jackson, Michigan—Henry Ford Allegiance Health has reported their hospital’s first patient death due to COVID-19. The male patient was a resident of Jackson County and was 74 at the time of his passing. He did have underlying health issues. Due to patient confidentiality, no other details are being released.

“This is a sad day for our community and organization,” said Paula Autry, President and CEO of Henry Ford Allegiance. Health. “We would like to extend our prayers and most heartfelt condolences to the patient’s family and other loved ones and share our deepest thanks to our entire care team. They have been pouring their hearts and souls into patient care since this crisis began.”

Autry added, “While this situation is tragic and COVID-19 is new to us all, our response is not. The health care providers at Henry Ford Allegiance Health are well trained in infection prevention practices, and proper precautions are being used to keep our patients and front-line health care workers as safe as possible.”

As of 5:30 p.m., Henry Ford Allegiance Health reported 11 inpatients with positive cases of COVID-19, with an additional 24 “persons under investigation” who are awaiting lab results and are being cared for on isolated units, preventing spread of the virus to other patients.

“This is a stark reminder of why we must take every precaution to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus to others,” said Mark Smith, MD, Chief Medical Officer at Henry Ford Allegiance Health. “Henry Ford Allegiance Health has invested significant resources into planning and preparation for the COVID-19 pandemic, so we are able to respond quickly and appropriately during situations like this. We anticipated as many scenarios as possible, including the unfortunate loss of patient lives, and our health system remains prepared to care for patients in need.”

Henry Ford Allegiance Health encourages community members to continue practicing vigorous prevention efforts, including:

· Stay home and practice proper social distancing practices.

· Washing hands frequently with soap and water.

· Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue and then throwing the tissue in the trash.

· Avoid touching face – especially eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

· Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

Copyright 2019 Associated Press. All rights reserved.