BHSJ Daily Update: Two Additional Deaths Attributed to COVID-19/Emergency Dental Care Available at MCDC Dental Centers

Coldwater, MI – The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency (BHSJCHA) received notification today of two additional deaths attributed to COVID-19 of residents from Hillsdale County.  “Our heartfelt sympathies and prayers go out to the families who have lost their loved ones,” says Rebecca Burns, Health Officer.  “Every additional positive case and death reminds us to all do what we can to stay home, stay healthy, and protect ourselves and those around us so that we can stop the spread of this virus.”

The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency (BHSJCHA) is reporting updated information on case counts in the tri-county area.  The number of positive cases in the 3-county jurisdiction as of 3 pm today includes 15 cases in St. Joseph County, 55 cases in Hillsdale County, 16 cases in Branch County and 32 at Lakeland Correctional Facility in Branch County.

Counts by County

Branch County Hillsdale County St. Joseph County
# of Positive Cases  16 + 32* 56 14
# of Deaths 1 5 0

*Cases in Lakeland Correctional Facility

Total cases statewide, from data compiled by MDHHS at 10 a.m. this morning and released at 3 pm today, are 18,970 with 845 deaths attributed to COVID-19.  BHSJCHA remains committed to thorough investigation and communication with all individuals affected by COVID-19.  The staff at BHSJCHA adhere to the MDHHS guidelines for testing and follow best practices for contact tracing and strictly adhere to patient privacy as required by HIPAA.

Obtaining dental care during a crisis can be challenging when dental practices operate on a different schedule and can only seeing patients for emergency services, but MCDC Dental Centers in Coldwater and Three Rivers remain open to serve patients. For individuals without dental insurance, Medicaid, Healthy Michigan Plan, and some commercial insurances, MCDC stands ready to continue to provide emergency dental care to those that need it. If you have a dental emergency, don’t visit the emergency department at your local hospital, call MCDC and schedule an appointment at 877-313-6232.

BHSJCHA is asking anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 to self-isolate for 14 days to avoid potentially exposing others. And for individuals that have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19, to self-quarantine for 14 days and monitor themselves for fever, cough, and shortness of breath. COVID-19 symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, people should:
• Stay Home. Stay Safe. Save Lives. in compliance with Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order
• Wash their hands
• Stay home when sick
• Avoid close contact with sick people
• Avoid touching their face
• Disinfect commonly touched surfaces
• When you must go out for groceries and other necessary supplies; only those people absolutely needed for the task should go, others should stay home.
• Keep six feet between yourself and others
• Work from home if you are a non-essential worker

People who are concerned that they may have COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider and call ahead before visiting any healthcare facility. Mildly ill people are encouraged to stay home and contact their healthcare provider by phone for guidance. If you feel well, you do not need to be tested. Testing is determined based on risk assessment.

Information about the COVID-19 situation locally, and in Michigan is rapidly changing. For more information, visit http://www.bhsj.org.
BHSJCHA is committed to promoting wellness, preventing disease, providing health care, and protecting the environment. For additional information, contact your local health department office or visit http://www.bhsj.org and follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/BHSJCHA.

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