Taylor Wizner

Hospitals across northern Michigan say they have enough beds, ventilators and PPE for this surge in COVID cases — the most of the pandemic.

Their problem now is having the staff to care for these patients, especially as the virus spreads through communities and healthcare workers themselves fall ill.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services

Starting Wednesday, restaurants in Michigan are again limited to delivery and takeout, high school and college classes can only be online, and non-professional sports games are cancelled. That’s under an order from Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s public health director.

Taylor Wizner / Interlochen Public Radio

  Last week, hospitals in the Detroit area reported being at full capacity.


The state asked hospitals to make room for any COVID-19 patients that might need to be transferred. It suggested hospitals to increase the number of Intensive Care Unit beds to 10 to 20 percent and prepare an emergency plan.



Now, some northern Michigan hospitals are making room for possible transfers.


Linda Stephan / Interlochen Public Radio


An Emmet County resident has died from health issues related to COVID-19, McLaren Northern Michigan announced Tuesday evening.

McLaren Northern Michigan Announces Cuts

Feb 26, 2014
Linda Stephan

Today the hospital serving Petoskey and Cheboygan announced it is cutting 43 workers, and reducing hours for another 100 of its employees. McLaren Northern Michigan says changes are effective immediately.

The move continues a trend of cost-cutting layoffs in Petoskey that stretches back several years to its time as an independent hospital.

Cheboygan has also seen significant cutbacks in recent years, as in-patient hospital services were eliminated following a bankruptcy and sale in 2012.

Linda Stephan

Leaders at the hospital in Petoskey say they plan to lay off 30 workers, including some managers. McLaren – Northern Michigan leaders have not said which positions will be eliminated.

Hospital leaders blame current across-the-board federal budget cuts, saying sequester cuts to Medicare will cost the hospital over a million dollars by the end of September.

In a statement, hospital leaders also say Congress is negotiating a budget that could mean even further reductions to the government insurers Medicare and Medicaid.