(FOX 2) - While COVID-19 has largely left the news cycle over the past year, many of Michigan's hospital chains are only now easing their mask restrictions for anyone working inside one of the facilities.
By next week, many of the state's health care systems will have updated the face mask policy to be optional for employees, visitors, and patients. Some have already made the decision to reverse course on the policy.
A news release from Spectrum Health, which recently merged with Beaumont Health into a new health care conglomerate called Corewell, said it was lifting its mandatory mask order effective Friday, April 14.
Other major health systems in Southeast Michigan, including Detroit Medical Center and Henry Ford Health announced similar moves for Friday as well.
Corewell said the factors for the updated mask policy include the number of COVID-19 inpatients had drastically declined, the variety of treatment options for those diagnosed, and "the desire to restore the powerful human connection when patients, caregivers and loved ones can see each other's faces."
Here is a full breakdown of the dates when mask policies will be updated:
- Ascension Michigan - Effective Immediately
- Bronson Healthcare - Effective April 18. Masking will continue at its skilled nursing facility
- Corewell Health - Effective April 14. Masking will continue at long-term care nursing facilities and transplant clinics
- Covenant HealthCare - Effective April 17
- Detroit Medical Center - Effective April 14
- Henry Ford Health - Effective April 14. Masking will continue in inpatient areas for immunocompromised patients
- Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation - Effective April 14. Masking will continue at the Mary Free Bed Sub-Acute Rehabilitation program
- McLaren Health Care - Effective April 17. Masking will continue in designated critical care units, the Karmanos Cancer Institute facilities, and outpatient rehabilitation facilities
- Michigan Medicine - Effective April 5
- Munson Healthcare - Effective April 14. Masking will continue in long-term care nursing facilities
- MyMichigan Health - Effective Immediately
- Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services - Effective April 13
- Trinity Health - Effective April 17. Masking will continue in senior living communities