Corewell Health East restricts hospital access to kids older than 5 as RSV spreads throughout the state

Posted at 6:37 AM, Nov 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-07 06:39:15-05

(WXYZ) — Corewell Health East, formerly known as Beaumont is cracking down on visitor restrictions as the spread of respiratory viruses soars across the country.

According to the hospital, there has been a 500% increase in positive tests among children, so starting Monday, all 8 of Corewell East's hospitals in Michigan will undergo visitor restrictions.

Starting Monday, the hospitals will not allow children 5 and under into their buildings as visitors unless there are extraordinary circumstances such as the severe illness of a parent or sibling, or an end-of-life situation.

As of Friday, 72% of all pediatric beds and 89% of pediatric ICU beds were occupied in the state.

Across the country, at least 17 states and Washington D.C. are reporting high or very high levels of flu.

"We're seeing an unprecedented number of patients in our emergency departments and upper respiratory infection caused by RSV. It's been a really early and severe year for RSV. Worse than any other year that I've seen. I've been doing this 20 years," Dr. Matthew Denenberg the Chief of Pediatrics at Corewell Health East said. "Our pediatric intensive care unit here at Corewell East in Royal Oak has been full consistently for the last few weeks. In fact, we have some ICU patients that are, you know, boarding over in the adult spaces."

Schools are also taking precautions. April Miller says her son's preschool will be closed Monday as they clean the building to help protect students against RSV.

"I don't know too much about it, but I know my son, his school is currently closed because of it. They closed it for like the whole week," she said.

On Friday, the CDC issued a health advisory warning for these elevated levels of COVID, RSV, and the flu.

"I think the thing is we had been masked and we have been so precautioned on COVID-19 with washing hands and social distancing and the virus hasn't really had time to spread other viruses such as flu and RSV," Medical Director of Community Health Beaumont Grosse Pointe Dr. Asha Shajahan said. "Now that the precautions are kind of gone, COVID-19 is a lot more regulated, although still out there, RSV is now on the rise."