To Our Members and Business Partners:
As always, MMRMA is committed to serving the membership. We regularly monitor news and information about the COVID-19 pandemic and provide ongoing updates and related resources that could benefit our members, their employees, and the citizens of Michigan.
Public health guidance from the CDC, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, and many state and county officials continues to support the use of masks and social distancing to limit the spread of COVID-19. See Wayne County's latest emergency health updates here.
MMRMA strives to operate with the highest standards and practices that foster safety and risk avoidance. As we help members address the risks associated with their operations, including those relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, we continue the protocols we have in place to protect employees and members. As a risk-management-focused organization, we encourage members to follow CDC and MDHHS guidance for practices that will help keep employees and residents safe.
Based on past guidance and existing orders from MIOSHA and MDHHS, the MMRMA team continues to work remotely and serve our members, implementing internal guidelines and practices for business continuity and efficient delivery of services. Please reach out!
- Members and business partners may find it easier to communicate with our staff via email. If you do not have a contact email address, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Our office line is 734-513-0300. It is actively monitored during business hours (Monday through Friday, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm).
- To reach us after hours in case of emergency, please call the business line and follow the prompts. A team member will call you back as soon as possible.
- MMRMA continues to conduct many meetings and trainings in a virtual environment and will notify affected parties about potential future adjustments to our scheduled events and activities.
Please bookmark this page for easy access and contact us if you have questions or need assistance. We wish you good health, now and always.
New Guidance on COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plans:
Earlier in the pandemic, MMRMA prepared a model COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan and Instructions for our members to use as a starting point for their own plans. In light of ongoing orders, guidance, and requirements by state and local officials, we reviewed available resources and recommend that members with low and medium risk employees consult the sample COVID-19 Preparedness & Response Plan For Lower and Medium Exposure Risk Employers ONLY prepared and provided by the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA). Their model plan is well crafted and will help members align their plans with the expectations and requirements of MIOSHA and state health officials.
Members with high and/or very high risk employees, such as medical care workers, jail personnel, paramedics, etc., are encouraged to work with in-house counsel to craft plans specific to those operations, which may vary from facility to facility.
MIOSHA's sample plan and other resources can be found on their website:
Additionally, under MIOSHA's Emergency Rules, item 5(8) states:
According to MIOSHA's FAQ: "MIOSHA will accept a written policy which indicates that employees are not to perform in-person work activities where the work activity can be feasibly completed remotely. Employers are obligated to demonstrate infeasibility of remote work. ... This written policy may be part of the employer’s COVID-19 preparedness and response plan. It does not have be a stand-alone document."
NOTE: MIOSHA's Emergency Rules were originally released on October 14, 2020, for a six month duration and were set to expire on April 14, 2021. On Tuesday, April 13, 2021, it was announced that the MIOSHA Emergency Rules have been extended for another six months, and are now effective through October 14, 2021. Read MIOSHA's press release here.
On Wednesday, May 5, 2021, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) revised its Emergency Order pertaining to COVID-19 testing requirements in Michigan's long-term care facilities. The order went into effect immediately. According to MDHHS's press release, "Under changes to the COVID-19 testing order for skilled nursing facilities, homes for the aged and adult foster care facilities licensed to care for 13 or more individuals, fully vaccinated staff no longer must be routinely tested." The press release also states: "Testing continues to be required under the following circumstances:
- Initial testing of all new or returning residents to a facility covered by this Order and newly hired staff when the individual is unvaccinated and has not been tested in the 72 hours prior to intake or start date.
- Testing any resident or staff member with symptoms of COVID-19 or suspected exposure to COVID-19, regardless of that individual's vaccination status.
- Weekly testing of all residents and staff in facilities experiencing an outbreak (any facility-acquired positive cases among residents or staff) until 14 days after the last new positive case, regardless of vaccination.
- Weekly testing of all unvaccinated staff.
On Tuesday, May 4, 2021, MDHHS issued an updated Gatherings and Face Mask Order outlining protocols to address the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the MDHHS press release, the updates encourage "safer outdoor activities as spring and summer bring warmer weather and new opportunities to go outdoors."
More from the press release:
Under the new order, which goes into effect Thursday, May 6 and continues through Monday, May 31, masks are generally not required outdoors unless a gathering has 100 or more people.
In addition, anyone who is fully vaccinated and not experiencing symptoms is not required to wear a mask at residential gatherings, including indoors. New guidance for organized sports no longer requires routine COVID-19 testing for fully vaccinated participants if they are asymptomatic. Masks continue to be required for contact sports but are no longer required outdoors during active practice and competition for non-contact sports.
The press release also outlines the following new guidance, which may be of particular note to MMRMA members:
- Large outdoor events, including festivals, fairs, and golf tournaments will be able to exceed the current 1,000-person limit so long as they create and post a safety plan consistent with the MDHHS Large Outdoor Event Guidance, and no more than 20 persons per 1,000 square feet are gathered in any space available to patrons.
The latest version of the order takes effect on Thursday, May 6, 2021, and remains in effect until Monday, May 31, 2021.
The new Gatherings and Face Masks Order and related information can be found here:
May 4, 2021 MDHHS Emergency Order
MDHHS Large Outdoor Events Guidance
MDHHS Capacity Limits Fact Sheet
May 4, 2021 Interim Guidance for Athletics
Choosing Safer Activities Infographic
Frequently Asked Questions
On April 13, 2021, it was announced that the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) Emergency Rules relating to COVID-19 are extended another six months, through October 14, 2021. (See note above.) Read the MIOSHA press release here. The agency also has a COVID-19 Interim Enforcement Plan available on its website.
On March 17, 2021, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) updated its Requirements for residential care facilities. According to the MDHHS press release, "CMS guidance says facilities should accommodate and support indoor and outdoor visitation as long as the facility has not had a new COVID-19 case in the last 14 days. Visitors will be required to wear face masks or other personal protective equipment when required by the facility at all times. In general, visitors will need to maintain six feet from residents."
March 17, 2021 Requirements for Residential Care Facilities Order
Residential Care Facilities Visitation Guidance Fact Sheet
Residential Care Visitation Infographic
Visitation Order Special Cases Information
As COVID-19 vaccine distribution continues nationally, MDHHS again updated information and resources explaining the interim plan for prioritizing vaccinations in Michigan:
The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has also provided some guidance to employers who may have questions about vaccinations. See Section K of their What You Should Know page.
On January 11, 2021, MDHHS issued an updated Emergency Order outlining COVID-19 testing requirements for employees of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) who conduct on-site compliance inspections of nursing homes. See the order for more information:
On December 4, 2020, MDHHS updated guidance on COVID-19 quarantine periods based on scientific findings released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Wednesday, Dec. 2. According to the MDHHS press release, "While the standard 14-day quarantine period remains, it can be reduced to 10 days if the following two conditions exist:
- The individual does not develop any symptoms or clinical evidence of COVID-19 infection during daily symptom monitoring for the 10 days after the last exposure.
- Daily symptom monitoring continues through day 14 after the last exposure."
See the full MDHHS press release for more information:
On October 16, 2020, the governor signed emergency rules to clarify workers’ compensation coverage for health care employees and first responders who have tested positive for COVID-19. The emergency rules apply to workers in the medical industry, including hospitals, medical care facilities, and emergency medical services, as well as law enforcement, fire safety, and others.
Under the emergency rules, employees are presumed eligible for compensable personal injuries under the Workers’ Disability Compensation Act if they are diagnosed with COVID-19, either by a physician or as the result of a presumed positive test result. These emergency rules replace protections previously put in place by Executive Order 2020-128 and are effective through March 20, 2021.
State Resources and Updates:
Michigan has an online COVID-19 dashboard. Developed through a collaboration between state agencies and the University of Michigan, the dashboard provides Michiganders with information about the status of the pandemic where they live and work. Go here to view and navigate the interactive dashboard:
During the ongoing pandemic, members continue to manage the vital work of critical infrastructure employees. In addition, many people are looking ahead to state and federal guidance permitting office and building re-openings. Both during and after a pandemic, it's important to understand and implement proper cleaning and disinfecting procedures to keep employees and citizens safe. MMRMA prepared this bulletin with the assistance of Traveler's Insurance to help. Access the bulletin here:
In order to facilitate social distancing practices in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, many public entities and businesses across the state have employees who are conducting their work at home. MMRMA prepared a document with guidelines for members on managing remote work teams and practices. Please access here:
Meanwhile, many member first responders and other critical infrastructure workers continue to do their jobs in communities, health facilities, and other front-line locations every day, protecting and serving Michigan citizens. MMRMA has published an article on our website discussing team anxiety and how to promote well-being in this challenging time:
With these rapidly changing conditions, it is more important than ever to consider potential negative impact to your properties. MMRMA prepared these bulletins with the assistance of Traveler's Insurance to help members manage closed properties during these unprecedented times. Access the bulletins here:
Please contact MMRMA’s Membership Services Department or your Risk Control Consultant if you have specific questions or need further assistance.
Law Enforcement and Corrections:
MMRMA, together with experts at the Legal and Liability Risk Management Institute (LLRMI), prepared these model guidelines for member law enforcement and corrections officials:
- MMRMA-LLRMI Guidelines for Law Enforcement COVID-19 Response
- MMRMA-LLRMI Guidelines for Jails COVID-19 Response
LLRMI has shared additional coronavirus/COVID-19 related resources with MMRMA for dissemination to member law enforcement and corrections personnel. Please go here to access videos that can benefit MMRMA members in managing law enforcement and corrections in the current landscape:
The Americans for Effective Law Enforcement (AELE) has an online resource folder with COVID-19 related links, sample documents, and other timely information about the virus and how to protect people and save lives. The AELE folder can be accessed here.
The Travelers website offers this useful article with several pertinent links:
Plante & Moran has coronavirus-related resources on their website:
COVID-19 Related Cyber Risks:
Cyber criminals are capitalizing on the fear and uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, using coronavirus-related headlines and verbiage to conduct e-mail phishing scams and other illegal activities. Please remain vigilant when reading e-mail and avoid clicking on links or downloading attachments from unsolicited emails or other unfamiliar sources.
For additional information, see MMRMA's April 2020 Risk Journal. You could also check this page from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), particularly the COVID-19 Cyber Alert section. You may also find this World Health Organization (WHO) link useful.
As employers, members may also want to review these links from the U.S. Department of Labor, the CDC, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Note: The poster on Paid Sick Leave and Expanded Family and Medical Leave Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act must be posted with other legally mandated state and federal employment law notices so that employees have this information:
Other Valuable Links and Information:
CDC Coronavirus Site
CDC COVID-19 Symptoms
CDC "What's New" Page
CDC Coronavirus Fact Sheet
CDC Poster: Stop the Spread of Germs
CDC Poster: Stop the Spread of Germs (Spanish)
Michigan DHSS Handwashing Poster