Also today: Grocery stores and Yad Ezra announce special hours.

A male in his 50’s who tested positive for the coronavirus and had underlying medical complications died at Beaumont Hospital in Wayne County early this morning. He was the first death relating to COVID-19 in the state of Michigan.

Beaumont Health says it continues to ramp up efforts to both process tests and screen individuals. On Tuesday, March 17, Beaumont processed roughly 500 tests. It has also sent 1,100 additional tests to the state and other national labs. Over 1500 individuals have been screened throughout the Beuamont Health system since March 15. 

100 coronavirus deaths have been reported across all 50 states and the District of Columbia as of this morning; experts are predicting this number will continue to rise. As of 2 p.m. today, March 18, Michigan is reporting 15 new cases, bumping the total number to 80 positive coronavirus cases across the state.

Bais Chabad Shifts to Virtual Services and Initiates Emergency Task Force

Bais Chabad Torah Center in West Bloomfield distributed an email notice March 17 announcing that all classes and services going forward will be held on Facebook Live and Zoom. The center had been one of the last remaining open Jewish congregations in Metro Detroit.

Bais Chabad is also creating an “emergency task force” of volunteers armed to assist others in need. Please email Rabbi Shneur Silberberg to get involved:

Bais Chabad Torah Center

Several Stores Offer First Open Hour for High-Risk Shoppers

Local grocery stores are changing the way they service customers during the outbreak. Stores like Target, Trader Joe’s and Kroger are adjusting their hours to restock shelves and implement increased sanitization efforts in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guidelines. Meijer stores are implementing pay continuation programs and free online coronavirus screenings by a physician. Be sure to check store hours prior to visiting local grocery stores and markets.

The following stores are restricting the first hour of shopping to seniors and immuno-compromised individuals:

  • Dollar General: First open hour is dedicated to high-risk individuals
  • Nino Salvaggio International Market (4 locations): 7 a.m. – 8 a.m. daily starting Thursday
  • Western Market in Ferndale: 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. daily
  • Target (nationwide): First open hour is dedicated to high-risk individuals

Free Food Services in Michigan

With school closings anticipated through April 5, a many districts and organizations are providing food services for children Monday-Friday.

Courtesy of Yad Ezra

Yad Ezra Offers New Hours and Pick-Up Routine

Clients of Yad Ezra in Berkley are not permitted to enter the building; they are advised to drive into the parking lot off of Robina Street, stay in their cars and line up like a drive-thru. A volunteer will come to their car to check ID, and then provide prepackaged groceries and a return date.

Passover distribution (April 5 and 6) will be handled this way — pick-up times to be released soon.

For more information, call Yad Ezra: (248) 548-3663, or head to

Updated Hours:

Sundays – 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Monday and Wednesdays 10:00 a.m. -12:00 p.m.
Tuesdays and Thursdays 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

U.S and Canada Border Closing

President Trump ordered that the U.S.-Canada border to close temporarily today to “non-essential traffic” due to increasing coronavirus numbers.

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