Sinai-Grace to receive help from local, state levels after photos go viral

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said the state is stepping in to help at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said the state is stepping in to help at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit

DETROIT – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said the state is stepping in to help at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit

RELATED: ‘The nightmares are bad’: Photos emerge showing body bags stacked inside empty rooms at Detroit’s Sinai-Grace Hospital

The assistance comes after photos of how bodies of COVD-19 victims were being stored and stacked.

The shocking photos are painful for the families who believe the hospital isn’t able to handle the number of deaths it is dealing with.

Update April 16, 3:45 p.m. -- Michigan coronavirus (COVID-19) cases up to 29,263; Death toll now at 2,093

The state said they will be helping with storage space to alleviate that problem.

Employees at Sinai-Grace tried to warn the Detroit Medical Facility that the hospital was not ready to handle the outbreak. Local 4 has confirmed that an official complaint has been made to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

Sources said the complaint includes a lack of protection equipment for nurses and extended work shifts up to 25 hours.

A group of nurses walked out last week, claiming the work load and the danger were too much.

READ: Nurses walk off job while protesting staffing numbers for COVID-19 patients

Staff members said they -- and Sina-Grace Hospital -- needs help. Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said he has been in touch with officials at DMC about helping.

“Every hospital system has had to get additional storage to handle the bodies in a respectful way," Duggan said.

Sinai-Grace Hospital released a statement about the body bags:

“The COVID-19 virus has caused significantly greater than normal mortality rates in the Detroit community. This has resulted in capacity issues at funeral homes and morgues outside of Sinai-Grace Hospital. Patients who pass away at our hospital are treated with respect and dignity, remaining on-site until they can be appropriately released. Like hospitals in New York and elsewhere, we have secured additional resources such as mobile refrigeration units to help temporarily manage the capacity issue caused by COVID-19.

Sinai-Grace sees more EMS traffic than any other hospital in Metro Detroit and is the only hospital in northwest Detroit. In addition, there are a large number of nursing homes in the area surrounding the hospital. Among the patient population served by Sinai-Grace, there are extremely high rates of underlying medical conditions such hypertension and diabetes, which puts people at higher risk for COVID-19. Sinai-Grace Hospital remains dedicated to its mission of providing quality compassionate care to the Detroit community.”

Anyone who believes they might have coronavirus should follow the CDC guidelines. Michigan.gov has a list of resources available to those concerned about COVID-19.

More information on coronavirus (COVID-19):


About the Authors:

Shawn Ley is an Emmy-Award winning reporter. In more than 20 years covering stories in television news, Shawn’s reporting has taken him from war-torn eastern Europe, to reporting from an F-16 fighter jet and now to the fast and furious breaking news of Detroit.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.