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UPHS now easing visiting restrictions

Visitors to be screened upon entry

MARQUETTE — UP Health System-Marquette and UPHS-Bell announced on Monday the transition from a zero-visitor protocol to limited visitor restrictions.

The decision was made after careful review of state and federal guidelines. The updated restrictions, which will now allow most patients to have one visitor or support person per stay, are effective immediately.

As part of the updated visitor restrictions, patients may choose one designated, healthy visitor for the duration of the patient’s stay. This also includes one companion for outpatient appointments and one support person for obstetric patients, including one certified doula or midwife during labor.

All visitors must be 18 years or older and will be screened upon entry. They will be required to wear a mask and a dated UPHS visitor sticker for identification while in the facility. Visitors are permitted between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. at UPHS-Marquette and must remain in the patient’s room except for the use of restrooms.

At UPHS-Bell, visitors are permitted between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., and also must remain in the patient’s room except for the use of restrooms and vending machines.

Visitors who do not pass the screening at entry will be asked to reschedule their visit until they are symptom-free. Visitors are not allowed for patients in isolation, including those who are under observation or test positive for COVID-19.

Both UPHS facilities continue to screen everyone who enters the facility for symptoms consistent with COVID-19 following guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Webinar on campus

return set

The Lake Superior Community Partnership will host a webinar at noon Wednesday with a presentation by Northern Michigan University on a safe return to campus this fall.

Panelists for the webinar will include Christopher Kirkpatrick, M.D., and NMU medical director; Cindy Paavola, NMU assistant to the president for strategic initiatives; and Mike Bath, NMU chief of police/director-safety. The panelists will discuss updates on the precautions in place for academic, living, dining, work and residential spaces on campus and how businesses and the community can be involved to make the transition successful. There will also be a question-and-answer portion for those tuning in.

The webinar is available for free online and is open to the public. To pre-register, go to bit.ly/nmuwebinar. Questions can be submitted prior to the webinar to Emily Tardiff at etardiff@marquette.org. For those who may not be able to tune in on Wednesday, a recording of the webinar will be available on marquette.org following the virtual event.

For more information on the webinar, contact Tardiff at etardiff@marquette.org.

Testing required for farm, food workers

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon on Monday issued an emergency order requiring COVID-19 testing for agricultural and food processing employees.

“The men and women who work in our fields and food processing plants are at particular risk for COVID-19, and they need and deserve protection,” Gordon said in a news release. “Today’s order will help to reduce the spread of COVID in communities across Michigan and reduce the pandemic’s disparate impact on Latinos.”

There have been 11 identified outbreaks at farms and food processing plants in Michigan in recent weeks. Additionally, Latinos are 5% of Michigan’s population but represent 11% of COVID cases in which the individual’s ethnicity is identified.

The order requires migrant housing camp operators to provide COVID-19 testing as follows:

≤ One-time baseline testing of all residents ages 18 and over;

≤ Testing of all new residents within 48 hours of arrival, with separate housing for newly arriving residents for 14 days and a second test 10 to 14 days after arrival; and

≤ Testing of any resident with symptoms or exposure.

Employers of migrant or seasonal workers; and meat, poultry and egg processing facilities and greenhouses with over 20 employees on site at a time are to provide COVID-19 testing as follows:

≤ One-time baseline testing of all workers;

≤ Testing of all new workers prior to any in-person work; and

≤ Testing of any worker with symptoms or exposure.

“The department will work with employers and housing operators to ensure timely reporting of testing data and access to personal protection equipment to prevent further viral spread,” Gordon said.

Fair showcase registration open

With the cancellation of youth fairs in the Upper Peninsula, Michigan State University Extension is providing the U.P. 4-H Virtual Showcase, an online platform that will support youth in their 4-H experience and continue longtime traditions. The showcase is open to all U.P. youth ages 5-19.

Though not the same as an in-person or “in-animal” county fair, 4-H Virtual Learning Showcases and auctions provide a space for youth to demonstrate their mastery of skills developed in 4-H. Through the online forum, youth will receive constructive feedback to aid in their personal and professional growth and recognition for their many accomplishments.

“Giving them the opportunity to share what they have learned and get feedback from a judge will help them think about their goals for the future,” said Susan Kirkman, Mackinac County 4-H program coordinator, in a news release. “Projects come in all shapes and sizes. Each project is more than just the final result. Along the way, youth learn invaluable skills and learn more about themselves.”

For youth interested in taking part in the virtual showcase, registration will be open online through Aug. 12 at https://fairentry.com/Fair/SignIn/14825. For more information, contact Erin Ross at 906-364-2055 or rantae@msu.edu. For resources related to virtual showcases and auctions, visit extension.msu.edu/virtualshowcase.

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