Ottawa County's COVID-19 Response Updates - July 14, 2020


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Ottawa County Updates I July 14, 2020

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Media Contact: Kristina Wieghmink, OCDPH public information officer

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Additional deaths reported since June 12, 2020

A male in his late 60s and a female in her late 90s. Both had underlying health conditions. Our thoughts go out to their friends and families during this difficult time.


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Click the image to expand. Sources: Michigan Disease Surveillance System, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Census Bureau, 2018 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates


Click the image to expand. Source: E.M Resource System


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7/4/20 Update: The Grand Rapids Region (which includes Ottawa County) increased to HIGH RISK level after weeks of increased cases. SAFE START MAP I SAFE START PLAN


United States hits record number of new COVID-19 cases

States like Florida, Texas, California and Arizona are experiencing significant increases in cases. Michigan cases continue to increase. Preventing the spread of COVID-19 is critical to our community's health and our economy. VIEW U.S. MAP


Ottawa County is also trending upward

With testing more widely available and the Stay Home - Stay Safe restrictions lifted, Ottawa County is seeing an increase in cases, with the most being between ages 20-29. This population is generally more social which includes more gatherings. With the majority of businesses open and people interacting in-person more, there is an increase in COVID-19 exposure and transmission. VIEW COUNTY DATA


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The hospital capacity data on the Ottawa County COVID-19 online dashboard provides important metrics on determining our preparedness and whether we’re making progress or not in containing the spread of COVID-19. The availability of hospital inpatient and ICU beds and mechanical ventilators lets us know if we’re prepared to take on additional COVID-19 cases of those who are experiencing more severe complications.

If the healthcare system is not able to keep up with patients and does not have enough PPE or testing supplies, along with a sustained increase in overall cases, then we may be in a position where the Governor tightens up on restrictions again.

We know this new coronavirus is transmitted through close contact, face-to-face contact within six feet of each other. This is concerning for public health officials, particularly when people gather without wearing face coverings or don’t practice physical distancing, as seen lately with crowds and holiday gatherings.  


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West Michigan is currently in Phase 4 of the Governor’s Safe Start Plan but our area is also marked as high risk as indicated on the state’s Safe Start Map. If we do not continue to make improvements by containing the spread, then the Governor could move us back to Phase 3 and reinstate the Stay Home, Stay Safe restrictions. This could result in more businesses having to close and schools not being able to meet in person this fall as outlined in the Governor’s Safe Schools: Return to School Roadmap.


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Executive Order: Face Coverings are Required

In response to rising COVID-19 cases in Michigan and across the country, Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-147, which reiterates that individuals are required to wear a face covering whenever they are in an indoor public space. It also requires the use of face coverings in crowded outdoor spaces. Most significantly, the order requires any business that is open to the public to refuse entry or service to people who refuse to wear a face covering, with limited exceptions. 


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Ottawa County Public Notices:
COVID-19 Outbreaks at Businesses and Events

The Ottawa County Department of Public Health (OCDPH) will send out a public notice to alert people of potential exposure to COVID-19 at a certain business or event if there is; an imminent health threat, if it is necessary for us to identify close contacts of a case and, to stop the spread of disease to others. This may happen if physical distancing and mask wearing was not implemented at a crowded establishment or event where the attendees may be unknown. If during the investigation, OCDPH is able to identify all individuals who were exposed, a public notification may not be necessary.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and previously limited services, the Ottawa County Department of Public Health is offering a Back-to-School event for kindergartners to get their REQUIRED hearing and vision screenings and vaccinations BEFORE school starts. If you can't make the event, please contact your doctor or call us at 616-396-5266.


Additionally, the Ottawa County Department of Public Health's Back-to-School immunization appointments will have extended hours 8 am to 8 pm on Thursday, July 16 and 30 at the Holland location.

Call 616-396-5266 to schedule an appointment. We are taking all precautions to offer a safe and clean environment for patients.


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Click for the state and local COVID-19 resource list

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Join the MI Restaurant Promise!


We are committed to working together and holding one another accountable to do our part and slow the spread of COVID-19.

"We’re disheartened to see some establishments where mandates are not being adhered to and enforced. It threatens to undo the many sacrifices the community and our industry have made since March 2020, and undermines the hard work of establishments who have implemented policies to keep the public safe. We are committed to working together and holding one another accountable.Though our entire industry is fighting for survival, our greatest concern is for the safety of our team members and guests. Please join us in committing to follow the guidelines set forth by public health experts and laid out in this promise. The future of our industry depends on it."


Questions about how to keep your establishment safe from COVID?

Check out MIOSHA's guidelines - Learn More


FDA Updates on Hand Sanitizers with Methanol

FDA is warning consumers and health care providers that the agency has seen a sharp increase in hand sanitizer products that are labeled to contain ethanol (also known as ethyl alcohol) but that have tested positive for methanol contamination. Methanol, or wood alcohol, is a substance that can be toxic when absorbed through the skin or ingested and can be life-threatening when ingested. 


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Face coverings are REQUIRED to be worn before entering any Ottawa County building.

For more information about county services, please visit


Governor to Provide Update 
on State’s Response to COVID-19 

Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Executive Dr. Joneigh Khaldun will provide an update regarding the state’s response efforts to COVID-19.    

Social Media and Live Streaming:   



We want to keep making progress! Help move our community forward to protect health and opening up the rest of the businesses and schools this fall. We must do it safely! FAQs


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Michigan Businesses Provided Toolkit to Help Workplaces Stay Safe

To further protect workers and the community, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-147 reiterates that businesses who are open to the public must refuse entry and service to individuals who fail to comply with wearing a face covering. The Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) stands at the ready to provide the tools necessary for business to protect their workers and remain safely open.

Under the governor’s order, businesses must post signs at all entrances instructing customers of their legal obligation to wear a face covering while inside – to assist employers with this requirement, a print-ready poster that businesses may use is available online. LEO and the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) have a set of online resources at that provides guidelines, posters for employees and customers, factsheets, educational videos and a reopening checklist to keep workplaces safe.


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Governor Whitmer Takes Swift Action to Save Lives, Signs Executive Order Requiring Mask Use in all Indoor Public Spaces 

Following uptick in COVID-19 cases, Governor Whitmer Says “Mask Up, Michigan!” 

Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed executive order 2020-147, which reiterates that individuals are required to wear a face covering whenever they are in an indoor public space. It also requires the use of face coverings in crowded outdoor spaces. Most significantly, the order requires any business that is open to the public to refuse entry or service to people who refuse to wear a face covering, with limited exceptions. Governors in the states of Kansas, Maine, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Washington have imposed similar requirements on businesses. Governor Whitmer signed this executive order in response to rising COVID-19 cases in Michigan and across the country. 


Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Directive to Improve Equity Across Michigan’s Health Care System   

New rules will require health care professionals to undergo training to help reduce racial and other disparities in delivery of medical services 

Governor Whitmer signed Executive Directive 2020-7 which directs the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) to begin developing rules that will require implicit bias training as part of the knowledge and skills necessary for licensure, registration and renewal of licenses and registrations of health professionals in Michigan. Implicit bias training was one of the recommendations made by the Michigan Coronavirus Task Force on Racial Disparities, which Governor Whitmer created in response to the devastating and disproportionate impact the pandemic has had on communities of color. 


Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Outlining Workplace Safety Guidelines for Meat and Poultry Processing Facilities 

Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-145 which outlines workplace safety guidelines for meatpacking plants to keep employees safe. 


Michigan Small Business Restart Program to Provide $100 Million in Grants for COVID-19 Recovery Efforts 

The Michigan Strategic Fund today approved a $100 million program that will provide grants to small businesses around Michigan working to recover from the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 virus, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced.  

The State of Michigan has appropriated $100 million of federal CARES Act funding through SB 690, signed into law by Governor Whitmer last week, to implement the Michigan Small Business Restart Program to support Michigan’s small businesses that are reopening and have experienced a loss of income as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.  

The Michigan Strategic Fund today authorized distribution of the funding across 15 local or nonprofit economic development organizations (EDOs) covering all 83 counties in the state to providing a base amount of $3.5 million per EDO for grants up to $20,000 each to support certain small businesses that have realized a significant financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 virus. 


$15 Million in Agricultural Safety Grants to Provide Critical Relief to Michigan's Farms and Food Processors

Fifteen million dollars in economic assistance for Michigan farms and agricultural processors, to mitigate risks of the COVID-19 virus across the state’s food production industry, gained approval from the Michigan Strategic Fund, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) announced today.  

“Michigan’s food and agriculture sector has been especially hard hit by the COVID-19 virus, and this investment will provide critical resources to ensure the safety of the state’s food production industry and its workforce,” said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. “We can further our economic recovery in the state by putting federal dollars through the CARES Act to work for the people and business across Michigan through efforts like these grants to farms and food processors.” 

In response to the economic impact of COVID-19, the State of Michigan has appropriated $15 million of federal CARES Act funding through SB 690, signed into law by Governor Whitmer last week, to implement the Michigan Agricultural Safety Grant Program. These grants will provide much needed funding to Michigan’s agricultural processors and farms in support of this critical industry in the state.  


State Treasurer: $300 Million in Grants Available to Help First
Responders, Local Governments Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

Grants Provide First Responders Premium Hazard Pay, Reimburse
Communities for Payroll Response Costs

State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks announced two new grant programs that will provide an overall total of $300 million to help first responders receive premium hazard pay and reimburse local governments for payroll costs incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


MDHHS Launches Rapid Response Staffing Resources for Long-Term Care Facilities Facing Staffing Shortages in 11 Counties

To assist with staffing shortages at long-term care facilities due to COVID-19, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is offering Rapid Response Staffing Resources in 11 counties.

“As additional COVID-19 testing takes place in long-term care facilities, some facilities will experience a need for surge staffing if staff test positive,” said Robert Gordon, MDHHS director. “To meet this need and ensure the safety of long-term care residents, MDHHS has established emergency staffing for short-term, immediate support to facilities facing acute staffing crises.”


EGLE offers guidance on redeeming bottle and can deposits post-shutdown

In early June, Michigan retailers officially began accepting cans and bottles with a deposit for redemption and recycling after an 11-week shutdown. During this time, it is estimated that Michiganders stockpiled 800 million containers, worth $80 million in deposits. Due to this tremendous backlog, the Department of Treasury established unprecedented measures to limit the amount of containers retailers could redeem in a week in order to avoid breakdown of the system’s reverse logistics and processing infrastructure.


Governor Whitmer Signs Executive Order Closing Indoor Service at Bars Throughout Much of Lower Michigan to Protect Progress Against COVID-19   

Governor also signs bills allowing cocktails-to-go at bars and restaurants 


Governor Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-143 closing indoor service at bars throughout most of lower Michigan to protect the progress Michigan has made against COVID-19. Regions 6 and 8, which include the Upper Peninsula and much of northern Michigan, are excluded from the order, and bars statewide can continue to serve outdoors. The governor also signed a package of bills allowing cocktails-to-go at bars and restaurants to help these businesses serve more Michiganders during this time.


MIOSHA launches program to ensure hospital workers have appropriate personal protective equipment 

To ensure front-line hospital workers caring for and treating COVID-19 patients are receiving the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) from their employer, the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) has launched a state emphasis program (SEP) that will be in effect through December 31, 2020. This SEP will increase MIOSHA’s presence in hospitals to enforce the requirement to provide appropriate PPE to protect hospital staff and ensure they can continue to care for those most in need.


State’s chief medial executive urges Michiganders not to delay emergency care

Data shows alarming increase in out of hospital deaths between March and May 2020

To help combat the alarming increase of out-of-hospital medical emergencies and deaths that occurred in Michigan this spring, Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) chief medical executive and chief deputy for health, is urging residents not to avoid seeking help in a medical emergency.


Gov. Whitmer Signs Bill Extending the Expiration of Driver's Licenses, State ID Cards, Vehicle Registrations to Sept. 30

Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bills 876-878, which codify her previous Executive Orders, further extending the renewal dates for driver’s licenses, CDLs, state ID cards and vehicle registrations. Among the extensions outlined in the legislation, those with driver’s licenses or vehicle registrations expiring after March 1 have until September 30, 2020 to have them renewed.


Governor Whitmer Signs Bill for Supplemental Funding to Support COVID-19 Response  

Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bill 690, which appropriates nearly $880 million in federal funding to support various COVID-19 response actions across the state. The supplemental budget includes a number of provisions that allow assist Michigan in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, help small business weather the difficult economic conditions created by COVID-19, and ensure that workers who put themselves at risk on the frontlines are fairly compensated.


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