Update: COVID19 to Leaders

March 13, 2020  //  FOUND IN: Strategy & Leadership, Updates & Resources

To Michigan Medicine Leaders,

Thank you for your ongoing leadership and support as we continue to manage the very difficult and rapidly changing coronavirus pandemic. In an effort to limit group interactions and practice social distancing to prevent potential COVID19 spread, I ask that you support the following changes to our workforce policies.  


Michigan Medicine will remain open and fully operational, but we need to encourage eligible employees (those who deliver services that do not directly impact patient care) to telecommute when possible and appropriate. To prepare for this, please review the telecommuting policy, and ensure you have the appropriate work agreement and evaluation forms. To assist your teams, refer them to HITS’ guidelines on working remotely.

Child care

Given the many school closings, we are allowing employees with children at home to telecommute. If telecommuting is not possible with children at home, employees can use their regular paid time off, vacation time, or the newly established temporary paid time off bank for COVID19 related absences (see below)

Continuing education

I ask that you encourage faculty and learners to remain engaged and productive in the education process while finding alternatives to in-person interactions.  Please share the following resources for faculty and learners, including a Remote Resource Guide, a document on COVID19 Research Operations, and Keep Teaching information from the Center for Academic Innovation.

One-time paid time off bank for employees during COVID19 pandemic

Effective immediately, full-time employees are eligible for up to 80 hours of paid time off to be used in the case of quarantine, isolation, or family care needs due to coronavirus exposure, illness or other related scenarios or a temporary lack of work. Part-time and temporary employees will be eligible for a pro-rated bank of time. If anyone on your team shows symptoms of illness potentially related to COVID19, send them home immediately for the 14-day quarantine period. More information will be available on the Michigan Medicine HR website when details are finalized.  Bargained-for staff should refer to their collective bargaining agreements for information.

Criteria for meetings

To support social distancing, share specific guidelines that might determine if meetings should continue, be cancelled, or take another form. Considerations should include:

  • Ensuring the meeting size is appropriate for the room size and format to avoid “crowding”
  • Removing open, shared food from the meeting
  • Meeting attendees, and their level of risk (eg. patients or immunocompromised people)
  • Using tele- or video-conferencing instead of in-person meetings
  • Assessing the business needs of having in-person team meetings

Information about COVID19 is available on Headlines and the University’s COVID19 Resource page and both are being updated daily. If your staff have questions, you can refer them to one of these sites or direct them to email non-patient related inquiries to coronavirus-info@med.umich.edu.

Thank you all for your continued leadership throughout this very challenging time. 


Marschall S. Runge, M.D., Ph.D.
Dean, University of Michigan Medical School
Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs
CEO, Michigan Medicine