Michigan Medicine begins postponing surgeries amid rising occupancy during COVID surge

Health system has seen a rise in both COVID, non-COVID care

The VentMI device has been created by a team of University of Michigan and Michigan Medicine researchers. (Michigan Medicine)

ANN ARBOR – Michigan Medicine has begun rescheduling some surgeries due to “extremely high hospital occupancy” this week for both COVID and non-COVID patients.

As COVID numbers continue to surge across the state of Michigan, many health systems are starting to become overwhelmed.

Michigan Medicine reported record-high emergency room and admission volumes this week, which caused the health system to scale back scheduled surgical procedures.

Read: Michigan’s latest COVID surge has Metro Detroit hospitals nearing capacity

“Due to rising occupancy and forecasts for continued high demand for emergency care and admissions, Michigan Medicine has had to make the difficult decision to reschedule a small number of scheduled surgeries late this week and next week in order to maintain safe occupancy levels,” said Michigan Medicine director of public relations Mary Masson. “For example, tomorrow we are postponing three cases, which on an average day represents about 1.2% of all surgeries.”

The announcement comes one week after the health system announced it would be bringing back visitor restrictions for adult patients. Similar to the onset of the pandemic, visitors for adult patients are no longer allowed unless medically necessary or are visiting labor and delivery or end-of-life care.

Read: University of Michigan hosts virtual discussion on vaccines, rising numbers

Masson said the health system will continue to monitor the evolving situation and will make further adjustments pending staffing and hospital room availability moving forward.