Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer is now facing a lawsuit as she continues to keep her state closed to help combat the spread of the coronavirus.
A group of medical professionals is behind the lawsuit, upset that the governor is taking “drastic, unprecedented [and] unilateral executive actions” to stop people from getting back to work.
At the heart of the lawsuit, however, is a claim from the medical professionals that Whitmer and her administration are using “grossly inaccurate” models to dictate the law—law that otherwise would not exist if she and her team used real-time data.
According to the Washington Times, initial estimates showed Michigan was going to be overwhelmed with 220,000 people hospitalized by the coronavirus. This would have obviously hindered emergency healthcare capabilities, but the state never received that many patients. And not even close.
Mackinac Center Legal Foundation and a private law firm, Miller Johnson, filed the suit that read: “Medical providers are on the brink of financial ruin, facing extreme revenue shortages caused by the Governor’s order forcing the postponement or cancellation of so-called ‘non-essential’ procedures. “Thousands of healthcare workers across Michigan have been furloughed or laid off.”
“Graphics depicted that while Governor Whitmer’s administration anticipated 220,000 patients being hospitalized without social distancing efforts, there had only been 3,000 hospitalizations as of April 27,” the suit added. “That is less than 1.4% of the projected COVID-19 hospitalizations underlying the governor’s declared states of emergency and disaster.”
The Washington Times reports Dr. Randal Baker, a general surgeon and president of Grand Health Partners, similarly argued that the governor was creating a worse economic situation that one that could have been produced by the coronavirus.
“This whole ‘elective-procedure’ thing is now a time bomb,” Baker told the outlet. “There is no good reason to have a ban on elective surgery any more. This is now a significant health problem for the people of Michigan and our patients, and I’ve had one patient attempt suicide — a very serious attempt.”
From the report:
The lawsuit is but one salvo in an escalating battle between Ms. Whitmer and those who believe Michigan must more rapidly open up its economy to stave off an economic catastrophe. The lawsuit said the lockdown orders were issued at a time when one estimate from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put the projected number of nationwide infections at between 160 million and 214 million, with deaths of between 200,000 and 1.7 million.
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Those figures have proved wildly inflated thus far, the lawsuit noted. As of Thursday, more than 85,000 deaths have been attributed to the coronavirus which afflicted the U.S. and other nations after first infecting people last year in Wuhan, China.
With a population of 9.9 million, Michigan has reported 48,391 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services. Of that total, the state has attributed 4,714 deaths to the virus and 22,686 recoveries.