A Message from Ed Ness, President and CEO of Munson Healthcare


On November 9, Munson Healthcare announced our decision to elevate our pandemic response plan from level orange to level red – the highest level in our pandemic preparedness plan. This means that we are proactively implementing plans to ensure that we can continue providing the best possible care and prioritize resources.

While cases, hospitalizations and deaths are on a decline nationwide, that is not the case in northern Michigan. As I record this message today, the positivity rate in northern Michigan is over 20% and we have nearly 100 COVID -19 patients in our hospitals. This surge has exceeded in numbers and lasted longer than what we experienced last spring and fall.

Complicating matters even more are large numbers of non-COVID patients needing higher levels of care and longer hospital stays. And, just like other industries, staffing shortages that existed prior to the pandemic still exist and, in some areas, have gotten worse. 

Moving to level red signals that we are prioritizing pandemic-related care and will be shifting resources to the highest areas of need.

Please be assured that we remain open and ready to serve you. And please do not delay necessary care or preventive screenings. If you have an appointment, keep it unless you are directly contacted by us to reschedule. Your healthcare provider knows what can and cannot be safely delayed, and your health remains our priority.

It’s also important that you find the right setting for the level of care you need. I invite you to watch our “Where to Go for Care” video that explains the different options available. And another great resource is our Ask-A-Nurse hotline. Registered nurses are available daily to answer your health questions and direct you to the right care setting.

I’m sharing this information with you so that you know that things may look different at Munson Healthcare until we can get through this surge. I ask for your patience and understanding as you may see longer wait times in our ERs or have an appointment rescheduled.

Our dedicated healthcare team is adapting to changes every day. They continue to provide care with compassion while pushing through the most extraordinary circumstances healthcare has seen in 100 years. I have never been prouder to work with such an incredible team of talented, dedicated individuals who continue to amaze me with their strength, determination, courage, flexibility, and perseverance.

Now more than ever, please join me in thanking our healthcare heroes whenever you have the opportunity. Thank you.


Thank a Healthcare Hero

Click below to send your words of encouragement to our healthcare team. Our medical professionals and support staff are working tirelessly to care for patients and maintain a safe environment during these unprecedented times.

Thank a Healthcare Hero!

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