FAQs: COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)

March 19, 2020  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources,

Last update: 11 a.m., Friday, April 3

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, faculty, staff and learners at Michigan Medicine have asked many questions regarding their work and personal lives.

Here is a closer look at many of the frequently asked questions, along with the answers that can be formulated as of now.

The organization will continue to update policies and procedures as the situation evolves.

Please note, the FAQs are divided into categories. Click on each category to jump to that section and then click on each question to see the answer:

Facilities

Q: With a significant number of entrances around the main medical campus closing, which ones will remain open?

A: The number of entrances to the organization’s facilities have been reduced to help facilitate the universal mask policy and limit visitors. Doors will still be accessible for emergency egress.

Entrances open 24 hours a day, seven days a week:

  • Rogel Cancer Center main entrance
  • Adult Emergency Services
  • University Hospital main entrance 
  • Children’s Emergency Services
  • Cardiovascular Center Entrance
  • C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital main entrance
  • Medical School/University Hospital connector

Entrances with limited hours:

  • Radiation/Oncology entrance: Open 5:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., M-F, and open to patients only.
  • Level 2 Taubman/P2/P3 Connector: Open 6 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.
  • Dock 5: Open ONLY for deliveries, 6 a.m. – 10 p.m., M-F.
  • Dock 9: Open ONLY for deliveries, 6 a.m. – 10 p.m., M-F.

The UH South entrance is now closed 24/7.

Q: What about access to the medical school?

A: All exterior doors to the Medical School currently on a Monday – Friday lock/unlock schedule will be secured 24/7 until further notice. All occupants including staff, faculty, students and contractors will be able to access card read doors with a valid MCard. Please contact and manage your anticipated visitors prior to their arrival until further notice.

Logistics, parking and transportation

Q: Will parking be enforced on campus?

A: As of Tuesday, March 24, parking permit enforcement in most campus lots and structures has been relaxed on a temporary basis to support the university community. Gates will now be raised in some parking areas that usually require a permit.

Permit parking: Parking permit enforcement has been suspended in many structures on the main medical campus, including Ann, Catherine, NIB and Palmer Commons. Gates are now raised to enable entry and exit.

The parking decks closest to Michigan Medicine’s patient care facilities (P1-P5) will continue to be enforced.

Please note, designated parking spaces (e.g. Accessible, Gold, Service or Business Vehicle) will remain enforced on all campuses. 

Additionally, Yellow AVI and Blue off-shift parking programs will maintain existing access to decks P1-P5. Regular weekday restrictions for these programs still apply.

Patient/visitor parking: Patient/visitor parking on the medical center campus, including Wall Street, will remain enforced. We will continue to evaluate operations and provide updates with any service changes.

Q: Why haven’t P1-P5 been opened up for employee parking?

A: We have opened hundreds of parking spaces in decks near and around the medical campus, along with encouraging staff to drive instead of taking the bus. We are constantly monitoring parking deck utilization in P1-P5 to determine if further relaxation might occur.

Q: Will shuttles and buses keep running at Michigan Medicine?

A: Transportation services is operating reduced service. The service level is equivalent to what is normally run on days when classes are not in session. Saturday and Sunday service will remain unaltered. However, additional buses have been added during peak hours on Michigan Medicine routes in order to facilitate social distancing. Click here for details.

AAATA changes: The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (AAATA) has announced reductions in services for TheRide. You can read more here.

Q: What steps are being taken in regard to food service?

A: Self-service food options like salad bars, fruit bars and soup have been eliminated from all retail food venues in the hospitals and health centers. The use of outside mugs has also been ended, so recyclable mugs or outside cups cannot be brought in and filled.

Q: Are hours remaining the same at retail food service locations?

A: Hours are being revised at some retail food service sites on campus. Click here to see the new hours, which are subject to change.

Q: Can I have packages delivered to my workplace?

A: Please eliminate deliveries to offices or workspaces from companies like Amazon or FedEx that are not related to patient care or Michigan Medicine business.

Human Resources

Please note, Human Resources has published a lengthy FAQs about the PTO offered in relation to COVID-19.

Q: On March 13, the University of Michigan announced the COVID-19 paid time-off (PTO) to all employees to provide support during the COVID-19 pandemic. What are the details of this paid time off bank?

A: Full-time employees are eligible for up to 80 hours of paid time off to be used in the case of quarantine, isolation, family care needs or lack of work related to COVID-19 illness or other related scenario. This is a one-time bank of paid time off for use during the current pandemic. Part-time and temporary employees, including student employees, will be eligible for a prorated amount.

Bargained-for staff should refer to their collective bargaining agreements or representative for information.

If you have a documented health condition and/or documentation from a health provider or health agency that requires you to quarantine or isolate during this time, you need to follow the standard process of opening a case with the HR Solutions Center Leave Management Team.

Q: What is the special 120-hour time-off work bank and who is eligible to use it?

A: The additional 120 hours, special-use PTO bank is for full-time employees who need to isolate as a result of contracting COVID-19 while providing direct care for confirmed COVID-19 patients. This special bank of time is prorated for part time and temporary employees. Employees are also eligible for the COVID-19 PTO bank of 80 paid-time off hours. Please consult with your supervisor or human resources representative if you have questions about eligibility.

Q: I need additional staffing in my area or have the bandwidth to assist other areas. Who can help manage that?

A: The HR Staffing Team has developed a new process to request additional staffing. If you have staff available to be redeployed to another assignment, please ask them to submit this form. If you or your department needs additional staffing support, contact the HR Staffing Team at 734-647-5798 or email at HR-Pandemic-Staff@med.umich.edu.

Education

Q: Are medical students going to continue rounding?

A: No, medical students will not be rounding in the hospital, effective immediately.

Patient care

Q: What is Michigan Medicine doing to prepare for more patients who test positive for COVID-19?

A: Symptom screening, as opposed to travel screening, is now in place to identify patients so that precautions can be taken immediately. Please note, all buttons and warning messages in MiChart that used to say travel screening now say symptom screening.

All visitors are being screened and those with risk factors for COVID-19 are not permitted to visit Michigan Medicine.

On top of that, the organization has identified ambulatory care and inpatient spaces where patients can be isolated in appropriate patient rooms set at negative pressure. Nursing staff will place the hospital-approved Special Pathogen Precautions sign (yellow) outside of the inpatient’s door. 

Employees have also been reminded of proper training regarding the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Q: How is Michigan Medicine managing hospital capacity?

A: The organization is proactively managing patient volume to limit impact to patients and maintain critical operation. This includes enhanced review for all admissions.

Michigan Medicine will be assessing whether elective procedures can be rescheduled as well as making discharges a priority. It is vital to appropriately use existing resources in planning for potential new patients.

Clinics and operating room staff will get direction from their supervisors on when and how this would impact their areas.

Q: What should I tell patients about this plan?

A: Patients should be reminded that the organization will attempt to accommodate their procedures as soon as possible, but during this time, Michigan Medicine is doing what it can to be prepared and minimize the risk of disease spread. The safety of patients and employees is the top priority.

Q: Are there plans in place to add beds within the organization?

A: General care will be expanded by utilizing spaces that can be used as inpatient beds and creating a field hospital (additional 500-1,000 beds) on the south athletic campus.

Q: Is Michigan Medicine testing patients for COVID-19?

A: Michigan Medicine has launched in-house testing for COVID-19 patients. Turnaround time is currently up to 24 hours. Future test development will increase the capacity for tests and shorten turnaround time.

Q: Are there new instructions that should be given to patients upon discharge?

A: Due to the frequent changes from the CDC in the care of patients, we have created specific patient instructions when discharging patients from ambulatory, emergency or inpatient settings. Please use these instructions moving forward in the discharge care for patients.

The language has been reviewed by a multidisciplinary group and vetted by IPE teams to ensure consistency with the CDC’s latest recommendations. The goal is to maintain a minimal number of documents that provide enough information for patients to care for themselves. Unusual circumstances will be handled with provider conversations and tailored instructions to the patient.

These documents will be reviewed and adjusted by IPE on a regular basis to match CDC recommendations.

To find the patient instructions in MiChart, please use the keywords covid umh.

Q: How is patient privacy being protected?

A: Please remember that patient confidentiality must be maintained. Accessing patient records to do your job (e.g., care for a patient) is appropriate, but accessing patient records out of curiosity is not appropriate and will result in disciplinary action. 

Q: How are ambulatory care clinics being affected?

A: In order to limit exposure for patients, their families and staff, and redeploy staff as needed throughout the health system, several adjustments have been made at outpatient clinics. Please click here for specific consolidations and continued openings.

Non-essential appointments are being rescheduled, or, in many cases, turned into E-Visits or Video Visits. All clinics are still accessible by telephone. If patients have questions about appointments, they can call their clinic or send their provider team messages through the Patient Portal.

Treatment and testing

Q: Is Michigan Medicine using hydroxychloroquine to treat or test treatment for COVID-19 patients?

A: Yes, Michigan Medicine is currently using and evaluating the efficacy of hydroxycholoroquine (Plaquenil). There are concerns that it may not be helping patients and that it has significant negative side effects; therefore, further assessment is ongoing.

Q: What is the direction on filling prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine? People with prescriptions (e.g. to treat autoimmune conditions) are being told they will not be filled.

A: LARA (Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs) for the State of Michigan issued the following on March 24: “Pursuant to Michigan Administrative Code, R 338.490(2), a pharmacist shall not fill a prescription if the pharmacist believes the prescription will be used for other than legitimate medical purposes or if the prescription could cause harm to a patient.” Patients already on the medication for an autoimmune condition should continue to receive their scripts. Patients with concerns or questions should reach out to their prescribing physician.

Q: Is Michigan Medicine using serum therapy?

A: There are reports of some attempts to use the plasma of patients who may have antibodies to COVID-19 as a treatment for the infection. Michigan Medicine is not currently doing this, as there are significant potential risks and a limited ability to determine if someone has antibodies.

Q: Should Advil/ibuprofen/Motrin be taken if tested positive?

A: The data on NSAIDS like ibuprofen connected to COVID-19 is extremely limited. There are concerns that it could affect a patient’s response to the infection, but it is also important to treat the dangerously high fevers which occur with COVID-19. For that reason, the organization is using acetaminophen (Tylenol) as the first-line treatment for fever, but still using ibuprofen and other NSAIDS when that is not enough.

Q: What is the likelihood of a false negative COVID-19 test?

A: While no test is perfect, Michigan Medicine’s in-house assays perform well and are able to detect very low levels of the virus in samples (0.1-0.5 copies/ul). Most of the patients are strongly positive. The rare false negative may occur because of limited sample collection or because the patient is early in their disease.

Q: Can we use alternative speciman types, such as oral or nasal swabs?

A: At the moment, only nasopharyngeal swabs have been validated for diagnosis of COVID-19. We are working on validating oral or nasal specimens to show detection of virus.

Q: I heard there is a new 5-minute test. Are we looking into using that?

A: We currently have multiple assays with differing analysis and timing. This combination of tests allows us to have the capacity and turnaround times to meet our patients’ needs. We continue to evaluate new tests as they are developed to improve both turnaround time and capacity. We are not using the Abbott 5-minute test at this time.

Q: Will we be using serology tests soon?

A: Currently, the FDA has not authorized use of any of the new COVID-19 serology tests. Pathology is actively investigating serology testing options. The time it takes to perform these serology tests may limit their usefulness in acute situations.

Q: Are there any changes to how we treat patients with VRE?

A: In order to conserve gowns during the COVID-19 pandemic, the CDC recommends that facilities consider suspending contact precautions for endemic multi-drug resistant infections such as vancomycin resistant enterococcus (VRE). Beginning Friday, April 3, patients identified to have VRE infection or colonization will NOT require contact precautions. Follow Standard Precautions for these patients. Units that currently screen for VRE colonization on admission, weekly and at discharge will continue to screen patients so that we can monitor for any changes in transmission. 

Personal protective equipment (PPE)

Q: I work in a patient care facility. Do I need to wear a mask?

A: Yes. Given the widespread community transmission of COVID-19, and to better protect staff, masks are being provided to all employees working at all patient care sites. Masks will be distributed by security as employees enter facilities.

All health care workers should wear the same standard facemask (not N-95) continuously throughout their shift.

This universal mask plan accomplishes two goals:

  • Protecting health care workers from exposure to infected patients who may be asymptomatic or have symptoms of COVID that have not yet been recognized.
  • Protecting patients and staff from other health care workers who develop symptoms while at work.

Every health care worker has the responsibility for strict adherence to the following safety and conservation protocols:

  • Hand hygiene: Should be performed before and after entering patient rooms.
  • Proper mask use
  • Before putting on the mask, perform hand hygiene
  • Do not touch your face or mask after putting on the mask.
  • The mask should cover your nose and mouth.
  • The same mask should be worn constantly for the entire shift and not removed unless soiled or wet.
  • Remove mask carefully, using the ear loops/ties and avoid touching the front of the mask.
  • Perform hand hygiene after removing the mask.

EXCEPTIONS: Isolation masks should be discarded AFTER caring for a patient in Special Pathogens Precautions or Droplet Precautions.

If you feel that you are unable to wear a mask, please contact your supervisor for guidance.

For additional details for the use of masks in isolation rooms, click here.

Q: Why can’t nurses and other staff be issued an N-95 for use? What is the plan for sterilizing N-95s for later use?

A: Employee safety is the highest priority. Due to the limited supply of PPE in Michigan and across the country, PPE conservation is critical to maintain appropriate supplies for the duration of the pandemic. We are asking everyone’s efforts to preserve PPE by following IPE recommendations, which are determined by risk of transmission. Enhanced PPE is used in higher risk situations. More information here.

We are implementing limited reuse of N-95 masks in specific hospital areas.

Additionally, Michigan Medicine is developing a reprocessing procedure using heat and ultraviolet light for disinfection of N-95 masks that will allow safe prolonged reuse of an N-95 mask by the same health care worker. The reprocessing procedure should be used in addition to the practice of extended use and limited reuse of N-95 masks. This reprocessing procedure is currently being piloted in select units.

Q: What is the organization’s supply of N-95s and projected inventory?

A: The N-95 supply is constrained throughout the world. To extend its supply, Michigan Medicine is validating a process to reprocess N-95 masks, as well as procuring other types of N-95s that will be deployed with fit testing in several areas to support the demand.

Q: Can I make/wear my own fabric mask?

A: At this time, it is recommended that a medical mask be used in the health care setting. It is important to be able to discard masks after care of patients in isolation precautions. In addition, medical masks have been tested for this use and currently, there is no detailed information on fabric masks.

Q: Is there enough PPE on-hand at Michigan Medicine?

A: There is currently enough Personal Protection Equipment and the organization has not denied anyone proper PPE

There is a world-wide shortage of PPE, and with an expected continued surge of patients, PPE conservation is essential. The organization is following the CDC’s recommendations on how to use PPE in these circumstances.

Please take a few minutes to watch this video regarding PPE conservation.

Q: Can I get training on proper use of PPE?

A: PPE training, including drop-in, continuous PPE demos, is occurring 24 hours a day from now through April 3, and 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. on April 4 through April 7. All training is conducted in the Towsley Center Lobby.

Q: What are the latest PPE recommendations for operating and procedure rooms?

A: Updated information regarding best practices on PPE in operating and procedural rooms can be found at these links:

http://www.med.umich.edu/i/ice/resources/coronavirus/ppe_or_guidance.pdf

http://www.med.umich.edu/i/ice/resources/coronavirus/ppe_procedure_guidance.pdf

And click here for a video message on PPE for surgical and procedural care from Mark Prince, M.D., chair of the Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery.

Q: Can I be fit tested?

A: Due to changes in requirements from OSHA and to assist with conservation of N95 masks, Occupational Health Services (OHS) is suspending the annual fit testing program. If you have been fit tested in the past, you may continue to wear the same size mask when indicated.

Fit testing will remain available on a limited basis through OHS for workforce members who have not been fit tested previously and meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Provide ICU level care (including RICU) to persons under investigation (PUIs) and patients with confirmed COVID-19
  • Perform procedures that are aerosol-generating or cough-inducing as defined by Infection Prevention and Epidemiology
  • Provide surgical care (in the operating room) to patients under investigation (PUIs) and patients with confirmed COVID-19

Q: Can I reuse goggles and eye protection?

A: Due to potential shortage concerns, it is important to appropriately conserve supplies. Employees should follow the appropriate protocols to clean and reuse eye protection such as goggles and shields.

Q: Are there specific recommendations regarding attire for workforce members caring for patients with COVID-19?

A: The SARS-CoV-2 virus which causes COVID-19 is primarily spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets. There are currently no data to support transmission via objects, although the virus can survive on surfaces such as plastic and steel. Porous surfaces such as clothing are less likely to harbor the virus for long periods of time. Additionally, clothing has not been associated with transmission of other respiratory viruses such as influenza. Finally, the PPE worn when encountering patients with suspected or proven COVID-19 includes gloves and a gown. Worn correctly, PPE prevents contamination of skin and clothing, and current evidence supports that use of appropriate PPE is highly effective at preventing transmission of the virus. 

Based on this evidence, here are the recommendations regarding clothing worn at work:

  • Those encountering patients with suspected or proven COVID-19 infection should wear the appropriate PPE.
  • If your job requires the wearing of scrubs, you should continue to do so. Scrubs are not required in the care of those with suspected or proven COVID-19 infection. If you did not routinely wear scrubs as part of your work routine prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, you should not require scrubs now.
  • Shoe covers and head coverings are not recommended PPE as transmission is via respiratory droplets and direct contact with infectious secretions.  
  • If workforce member clothing becomes soiled through exposure to blood or other potentially infectious body fluids, it should be changed and laundered. 

Q: Are my street clothes or scrubs at risk of being contaminated?

A: If you are wearing appropriate PPE, your regular street clothing and/or scrubs should not be contaminated. Hospital-issued scrubs will not be available for all patient care workers. Goggles and face shields can be reused after being wiped clean with oxivir.

Q: Given a shortage in scrub supply, what are the organization’s recommendations?

A: Hospital-issued scrubs should be requested and worn only by those who work in environments that perform surgical procedures (all ORs, PACUs, CSPD/CERD, Labor and Delivery) and invasive procedural suites (MPU, CPU, IR (all locations), offsite endoscopy centers), the Pharmacy Clean Room and the Regional Infectious Containment Unit (RICU).

We ask that those who are wearing hospital-provided scrubs outside the areas noted above, please return these scrubs.  We will provide bins at the employee entrances specific to scrub collection.  If you have sets of hospital owned scrubs at home, we ask that you bring these in as well so they may be laundered and provided to employees who must have them to function in their role.  We will no longer provide scrubs to employees outside the respective roles identified above.

Those who personally own their scrubs can continue to wear them and launder at home.

Q: Where can I learn more about PPE in the inpatient setting?

A: Safety Management Services, in conjunction with IPE, has created a website to offer even more guidance regarding PPE in the inpatient setting.

Visitor policies

Q: What is the visitor policy?

A: To protect patients, faculty and staff during the global COVID-19 pandemic, we have suspended visiting in our hospitals and health centers. Limited exceptions will be made in the following areas: Pediatric inpatients, adult developmentally delayed inpatients, adult and pediatric inpatients at end of life, adult and pediatric inpatients at discharge, labor and delivery, outpatient surgery and procedures, outpatient clinics, all emergency departments.

In each case, the exceptions are narrowly defined. You can view the full list of exceptions in the policy on PolicyStat.

Workforce and potential exposure questions

Q: Has OHS changed its visit protocols?

A: Occupational Health Services will be triaging all visits through the main phone number: 734-764-8021. Hours of operation for normal business will be available Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Phone lines will be available 24 hours/7 days per week for employees who are sick and/or have questions related to COVID-19.  

Effective immediately, please contact OHS by phone for the following:

  • If you are sick and/or have questions related to COVID-19, please DO NOT visit OHS. Call OHS and select prompt 1.
  • If you are sick and your condition is NOT a medical emergency, please contact OHS and avoid using the Emergency Department. If your condition IS a medical emergency, please go to the closest emergency department. 
  • For fit testing, call OHS between the hours of 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Please call to schedule a visit. 
  • For acute work related injuries, call OHS between the hours of 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • If you have an occupational health need and are unsure how to proceed, call OHS.

Q: What are the latest travel recommendations for Michigan Medicine workforce members?

A: The University of Michigan has suspended all university-related international travel through April 21, 2020. Domestic business travel and all personal travel are discouraged.

There are no work restrictions for workforce members with recent travel.

Q: What should I do if I am exposed to someone with confirmed COVID-19 at work or in the community?

A: Infection Prevention and Epidemiology will continue to facilitate notification of Michigan Medicine workforce members when they have been exposed to a patient with confirmed COVID-19.

Workforce members who are concerned they have been exposed to COVID-19 may contact OHS for guidance.

  • If it is determined that you had a low-risk exposure, you will be allowed to continue to work but should monitor for symptoms. If you become ill, you should contact OHS and your physician.
  • If your exposure was high-risk or medium-risk, you will be told to self-isolate for 14 days following the exposure, and OHS will contact you for active symptom monitoring. If you become ill, you should contact OHS and your physician.

If you have contact with any other individual (not a patient) with confirmed COVID-19 in the workplace or in the community, you should contact OHS for guidance.

Q: I have been told to self-isolate following exposure to an individual with confirmed COVID-19. What does this mean?

A: Self-isolation means staying away from other people as much as possible. Workforce members who are told to self-isolate should take the following precautions:

  • Stay home and avoid contact with others.
  • Do not go to work or school for this 14-day period. 
  • Do not take public transportation, taxis, or ride-shares.
  • Avoid crowded places (such as shopping centers), and limit your activities in public.
  • Keep your distance from others (about 6 feet).

Q: What should I do if I was previously placed off work following travel or a COVID-19 exposure?

A: As long as you are not having symptoms, you may return to work at this time.

Q: What should I do if I have contact with someone who is being tested for COVID-19 at work or in the community?

A: As long as you are not having symptoms, you may continue to work.

Q: What should I do if I have contact with someone with symptoms of a respiratory infection (not confirmed as COVID-19) at work or in the community?

A: As long as you are not having symptoms, you may continue to work. If you become ill, follow the recommendations for ill workforce members given below.

Q: What should I do if I had contact with someone who had no symptoms at the time but was later diagnosed with COVID-19?

A: If the individual had no symptoms at the time you had contact with them, the risk of transmission is very low. You may continue to work and should monitor for symptoms.

Q: What should I do if I have contact with someone who was exposed to an individual with confirmed COVID-19?

A: As long as you are not having symptoms, you may continue to work.

Q: What symptoms should I monitor for following exposure to an individual with confirmed COVID-19?

A: The most common symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough and shortness of breath. On average, symptoms occur 5 days following exposure, but can occur from 2-14 days following exposure.

Other possible symptoms include chills, headache, body aches, sore throat, vomiting and diarrhea. These symptoms are not specific to COVID-19 and can occur with other viral respiratory infections (e.g., influenza).

Q: What should I do if I become ill?

A: If you become ill following exposure to an individual with confirmed COVID-19, you should not come to work and should contact OHS and your physician.

Otherwise, you should follow established guidance for Michigan Medicine workforce members with presumed viral respiratory infections:

  • For fever (temperature >100.4F or 38C) and upper respiratory infection (nasal congestion, sore throat, cough)
  • OR laboratory-confirmed influenza
  • OR influenza-like illness (upper respiratory infection plus chills, headache, or myalgia) with or without fever
    • Remain off work until fever and other symptoms have resolved for 24 hours without use of medication
  • For upper respiratory infection without fever or cough:
    • You may continue to work but should wear a mask during patient contact

Unless you had an exposure to an individual with confirmed COVID-19 or are diagnosed with COVID-19, you do not need to be cleared by OHS to return to work following illness.

For additional information about work restrictions for workforce members with infectious diseases, please refer to the UMHS Infection Prevention work restrictions policy: https://michmed-clinical.policystat.com/policy/7415053/latest/

Q: How can I be tested for COVID-19?

A: Testing is currently available at select Michigan Medicine ambulatory locations by calling the COVID-19 hotline for Michigan Medicine patients at 734-763-6336.

Q: What should I do if I am waiting for my COVID-19 test result?

A: You should self-isolate and not come to work until the test result is available. If the test result is negative, you may return to work per the work restrictions policy referenced above in consultation with OHS.

Q: What should I do if I am diagnosed with COVID-19?

A: If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, you should contact OHS and stay at home unless you require medical attention. You must be cleared to return to work by OHS in consultation with the local health department.

Recommendations about how to prevent transmission to others can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html.

Q: How can I protect myself from exposure to COVID-19 at work?

A: You should follow recommendations from IPE for appropriate use of personal protective equipment and practice hand hygiene regularly.

Updated recommendations can be found at: http://www.med.umich.edu/i/ice/resources/coronavirus.html

Q: Should I care for patients who are being tested for COVID-19 or who have confirmed COVID-19 if I am pregnant or have an underlying medical condition?

A: Workforce members caring for patients who are being tested for COVID-19 or who have confirmed COVID-19 should not:

  • Be pregnant
  • Be breastfeeding
  • Be immunocompromised
    • Persons with primary or acquired immunodeficiency
    • Persons on anti-rejection therapy following solid organ transplant or bone marrow transplant
    • Persons on biologic therapeutic agents such as tumor necrosis factor inhibitors.
    • Persons with malignancy and ongoing or recent chemotherapy
    • Persons receiving systemic immunosuppressive therapy, including corticosteroids equivalent to 20 mg/day of prednisone for 2 weeks
    • Be 70 years of age or older
    • Be unable to wear an N95 mask or powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) if indicated
    • Be unable to don and doff personal protective equipment safely

Workforce members with the above conditions may continue to provide care for patients with respiratory illness who are not being tested for COVID-19.

Q: As a health care worker, how can I protect others living in my home from exposure to COVID-19?

A: There is no guidance from the CDC or World Health Organization specific to health care workers on preventing transmission in the home. Health care workers should follow standard guidance for prevention in the home setting: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/protect-family.html.

For more guidance from Infection Prevention & Epidemiology on attire for those caring for patients with COVID-19, click here.

Q: As a front-line employee, can I get assistance with laundry or dry cleaning services?

A: To support employees who are spending long hours at the hospital, Michigan Medicine has identified local laundry and dry cleaning services that are able to pick-up and deliver laundry at employees’ homes or near Michigan Medicine.

Please contact the service that is most convenient for you. There is no charge for the pick-up or delivery, only for the laundry/cleaning services. 

Iris Dry Cleaners

  • 2268 S. Main St., Ann Arbor,
  • To schedule, call Jay: 616-990-7991

Eureka Cleaners

  • Locations around Ann Arbor
  • To schedule, call Jin: 734-239-4319

Martinizing of Ann Arbor

  • Multiple locations (Plymouth Rd, Stadium and Packard)
  • To schedule, call: 734-637-4757

Q: Can I donate blood to help?

A: There is a crucial need for blood donations. Donations have plummeted and organizations have canceled blood drives. Appointments can be scheduled at redcross.org.

Q: What is appropriate for me to share on social media?

A: There is a vast network of employees on social media, and while all efforts to spread knowledge and awareness during this uncertain time are appreciated, please allow the Michigan Medicine official channels to take the lead on the most pressing messages.

Exercise caution in the sharing of conversations and emails that are intended for a small or internal Michigan Medicine audience rather than a much larger social media world. Protecting patient privacy is a top priority at Michigan Medicine, and the organization must avoid inadvertent disclosures via selfies or other photos on social media.

Michigan Medicine’s social media policy can be accessed here.

The public is hungry for information, and the Michigan Medicine social media channels are used to strategically share these messages. All messaging through these central channels is suitable for sharing.

More information

Q: Where can I learn more information?

A: You can find a lot of information regarding university policies on this U-M website.  Additionally, Michigan Medicine’s Department of Infection Prevention & Epidemiology has set up a page with a number of valuable resources for employees, ranging from clinical and ambulatory guidelines to weekly updates. 

Michigan Medicine Headlines is also regularly publishing information and has set up a specific page that compiles all COVID-19 communications.

If you still can’t find what you’re looking for on these web pages, please email coronavirus-info@med.umich.edu and your question will be answered as quickly as possible.

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