Henry Ford Allegiance treating 18 patients with coronavirus

Jackson, Michigan—Henry Ford Allegiance Health has reported their hospital’s first patient death due to COVID-19. (Source: WILX)
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JACKSON, MI (WILX) -- Henry Ford Allegiance Health said it is currently treating 18 inpatients who have tested positive for the coronavirus.

The health system said 14 other patients are being treated as "persons under investigation" pending the results of their coronavirus test.

Henry Ford Allegiance Health said they are being cared for in isolated units in the hospital to prevent the spread of the coronavirus to other patients.

The health care systems said local businesses and community members are offering to produce everything from hand sanitizer to face shields and surgical masks filters.

“These last couple of weeks have shown how industrious we can be when faced with big challenges and how we can work across industries to create solutions to unexpected problems when we’re all working together,” said Paula Autry, President and CEO of Henry Ford Allegiance Health.

The health care system said it is also preparing by doing the following:
• Activating the hospital’s Incident Command Center on March 13, which is staffed with highly trained crisis response leaders and team members.
• Placing patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 on designated units.
• Securing adequate supplies of proper personal protective equipment (PPE) for employees to perform their jobs safely.
• Providing additional training to staff on proper PPE use and recommended infection prevention precautions.
• Developing a multi-phase surge capacity plan to convert the hospital’s new patient tower to an Intensive Care Unit for patients with COVID-19 as well as utilize nearby Henry Ford Allegiance Health sites of care, if needed.
• Screening every employee as they report to work, taking their temperature and asking about possible COVID-19 symptoms, and limiting employee access points to all sites of care.
• Implementing temporary visitor restrictions across all Henry Ford Health System sites of care.
• Reducing the number of patients in the hospital by postponing appointments and procedures that are not time-sensitive.

On Monday the health care system said it was treating five patients from other communities.

Henry Ford Allegiance Health said community members who want to send encouraging messages to patients with suspected or positive coronavirus results can use the Well Wishes feature on the health systems website.

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