Executive orders requiring grocery stores to keep special hours for seniors and vulnerable populations to shop and instituting more protections at nursing homes are extending under a new set of orders issued by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Monday.
Grocery stores are required to set aside at least two hours per week for populations that are considered vulnerable to COVID-19, including people over 60, pregnant women and people with chronic diseases. The order requiring that was set to expire, and EO 149 extends it until Aug. 10.
EO 148 extends a previous order saying nursing homes can’t evict residents and must put in place stringent infection control protocols. It is also extended until Aug. 10.
Whitmer’s handing of nursing homes has come under scrutiny from Republican officials who say COVID patients should not have been housed in the same facilities with vulnerable residents without the disease.
A third order changing licensure requirements for medical professionals was amended. EO 150 replaces a previous executive order that let medical professionals in some positions that typically require supervision or delegation to practice without those measures in accordance with their training.
“As Michigan continues to make progress in slowing the spread of COVID-19, it is no longer necessary to permit medical professionals to practice beyond the limits of their licenses. I have no doubt suspending these scope of practice laws helped save countless lives and ensured our hospitals were fully staffed to care for COVID-19 patients,” Whitmer said in a press release.
Requirements that people take an exam, be fingerprinted or do continuing education are still suspended under the order, and professional certifications in things like life support and first aid remain in effect even if they are set to expire.
COVID-19 PREVENTION TIPS
In addition to washing hands regularly and not touching your face, officials recommend practicing social distancing, assuming anyone may be carrying the virus.
Health officials say you should be staying at least 6 feet away from others and working from home, if possible.
Use disinfecting wipes or disinfecting spray cleaners on frequently-touched surfaces in your home (door handles, faucets, countertops) and carry hand sanitizer with you when you go into places like stores.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has also issued an executive order requiring people to wear face coverings over their mouth and nose while inside enclosed, public spaces.