Who Is Responsible For COVID-19 Nursing Home Deaths In MI?
Media coverage on the issue is not widespread. Nonetheless, questions about sending people who contracted the COVID-19 virus in Michigan into nursing and long-term care facilities remain a hot-button issue in the state. A State Senate Committee is still probing for answers to key questions. And the Whitmer Administration just settled a court case relating to the situation. Neither provides a solid foundation for the Governor to defend her virus precautions that have been issued through several state departments. Many of those virus rules have been reduced or eliminated in the past two weeks. More are set to fall to the wayside on the first of July.
The Michigan State Senate Oversight Committee was forced to issue formal document requests to the Whitmer administration in early March. At stake, information and evidentiary documents issued internally by the state surrounding the entire picture of COVID patients being sent to nursing and long-term care facilities. The best estimates are that about one-third of the deaths in Michigan connected to COVID-19 happened at those facilities. Many state lawmakers contend that never should have been allowed to take place. They place the blame solely on Governor Gretchen Whitmer and several state department heads working in concert with the Governor’s office on the virus controls imposed on the state without consultation or support of the state legislature.
Now, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Charlie LeDuff is winning a conciliatory court settlement agreement with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. This development is connected with the state failing to provide public records about the circumstances. LeDuff has been represented by the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation. An attorney involved with the case from the Center is saying there is every reason to believe the state has undercounted, potentially on purpose, the full extent of the deaths connected to the virus since the outbreak began early last year.
The Center and reporter LeDuff continue to probe the available data, along with searching for additional information to bring the full picture to light.