FAQ

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Help Hotline: Residents with non-health calls should call 248-858-1000

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"Coronavirus Disease 2019, or COVID-19, is the disease caused by a new respiratory virus named SARS-CoV-2.

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person:

Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).

Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose or possibly their eyes.

People diagnosed with COVID-19 have reported mild to severe respiratory illness 2 to 14 days after exposure. Symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
There is not a vaccine or specific treatment recommended for COVID-19. People with COVID-19 can seek medical care to help relieve symptoms."
Everyone can get COVID-19, no matter what your age. However, individuals who are elderly, over the age of 60 or have underlying health issues are at greater risk for complications. Underlying health issues include diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, chronic respiratory disease, COPD, and emphysema. If you are in a high-risk group, you should take extra precautions with social distancing. Grandparents should remain apart from their grandchildren at this time.
If you can, stay home. Only conduct essential activities at this time. Wash your hands, clean and disinfect surfaces, and practice social distancing. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) advises that we stay at least 6 feet apart from other people and only gather in groups of less than 10.
If you have symptoms contact your doctor and they will determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19 and advise you how to proceed. Unfortunately, there are not enough tests nationally or in Michigan for every person to be tested. But we're working with officials to address that shortage so that people who are exhibiting symptoms can be tested. If you don't have a doctor, contact the Oakland County Nurse on Call at 1-800-858-5533 or email the Nurse on Call at noc@oakgov.com.
COVID-19 spreads rapidly from person to person and if we don't act we will quickly the number of people who require medical treatment will quickly overwhelm our hospital system. Hospitals are already experiencing shortages of ventilators, personal protective equipment, and other key medical supplies. We need to slow the spread of the virus and reduce the number of sick people so hospitals can treat the most ill.
Oakland County has set up a Help Hotline to assist residents with non-health related questions. We are happy to answer any questions or connect you with community resources such as food or housing assistance. The Help Hotline is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The CDC changed its guidance on facemasks on April 3, 2020. Surgical masks and N-95 respirators must still be preserved for health care workers. 

The CDC now recommends that citizens wear cloth facemasks when they must go out and continue to practice 6 feet social distancing and frequent handwashing. The change accounts for the possibility that individuals without symptoms could spread the virus and a cloth facemask could prevent the release of respiratory droplets from their nose and mouth. 

Cloth facemasks could include bandanas, scarves and other homemade face coverings. 

You may read the CDC guidance here and here. Learn how to make a cloth facemask out of a t-shirt and rubber bands (no sewing needed) in this video from U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams.  

 Executive Town Halls

​Oakland County Executive David Coulter has conducted a series of telephone town hall meetings with more than 10,000 Oakland County residents. The questions below were answered during one of those calls. Listen to the recorded meetings here.

If you have additional questions about the coronavirus or what Oakland County is doing to prevent its spread and keep you safe and you don’t see it answered here, call (248) 858-1000 and we’ll get you the answer


This is a new virus. We don’t believe you would be re-infected, but we don’t know for sure. It may be a while before we know. It’s not well-established.
It depends on a lot of things. We hope to flatten the curve by social distancing. I don’t imagine we’re going to stop social distancing for at least a few months. We have really good tools here. Social distancing got them through a pandemic 100 years ago. It works. Handwashing works. I don’t want you to live in fear every day.
We don’t believe so. We don’t have any scientific articles that provide this data yet but we assume having the virus provides immunity but we can’t say for certain this is the case.
This is an evolving situation and more is being understood today than several weeks ago. Some limited information was recently released that indicates people who are asymptomatic and go on to develop COVID-19 may have a low chance of spreading the illness to others before they exhibit symptoms. 

The key thing is to stay home unless you are an essential worker, doing essential things like grocery shopping, going to the pharmacy or seeking medical care and practice social distancing by ensuring there are at least 6 feet between you and others. 

Equally important is to practice precautions like washing your hands; keep your hands away from your eyes and face; avoiding close contact, sharing cups, or sharing eating utensils; cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, such as computers, table, and doorknobs and practicing good health habits like getting plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
Anywhere from two to 14 days although most of the cases present themselves within five to seven days. But the general guidance is, you’re not out of the woods for 14 days.
Call first before going to the doctor or the hospital emergency room to make sure they are equipped to handle your situation. You will be covered. The insurance companies are working together, waiving the co-pays.
The information is evolving on this issue. When talking about pets, the best advice is to call your veterinarian.
The “CO” is for corona, “VI” is for virus and “D” is for disease. The 19 is for the year it was first discovered.
I would always refer you to your physician. They know things about you I don’t. We have fevers for a reason: to deter the virus from going in your body. You want to keep the fever in the manageable range. The best place to have that discussion is with your doctor. Also, don’t return to work or school until 24 hours have passed without a fever, having not taken any fever-reducing medication.
We generally believe that once you have a virus, you develop an immunity to it, but we don’t have enough data on COVID-19. We can assume that is true, but we don’t know how it behaves in the population.
This is a new virus. We don’t believe you would be re-infected, but we don’t know for sure. It may be a while before we know. It’s not well-established.
It’s important to relay that information to your doctor, any exposure you may have had and your symptoms. Feel free to call Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533. The doctor may say to isolate at home. We also have good information on our website, OakGov.com/heath with a self-monitoring guide. Click on the General Health button. You’ll find an easy to use fact sheet.
Contact your doctor and tell them about your related symptoms. The doctor may want to run several tests on you. It is vital you call your doctor.
Call your physician and them know. There may be other questions he has for you or you have for the doctor. It is possible your symptoms may be attributed to COVID-19, but they are not classic symptoms. I would call your doctor and discuss it with him. For those of you who don’t have a regular physician, contact Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.
It depends on your insurance. If you need assistance in getting free testing, call the Nurse on Call at 1-800 848-5533. Most insurances are now covering this test and most are also waiving co-pays.
That’s difficult to tell. Your doctor can talk you through it. If it starts to worsen or progress, you’re probably not talking about an allergy but something more serious. I heard one physician say that if you took some allergy medication and everything cleared up, it’s highly unlikely it’s COVID-19 but everyone is different. I always recommend calling your physician or Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.
Unfortunately, no. This is not a flu strain. COVID- 19 is a different category and although there are benefits to getting the flu shot. We absolutely don’t want you to get the flu and get worn down or even worse, we have seen some instances where people get the flu and COVID-19. That’s something we don’t want to see.
Great you’re staying inside. It’s going to be some time, be careful to avoid people and continue practicing social distancing. Have things such as food or medicine delivered to you if possible. It’s ok to go outside but practice social distancing when you do.
This is an evolving situation and more is being understood today than several weeks ago. Some limited information was recently released that indicates people who are asymptomatic and go on to develop COVID-19 may have a low chance of spreading the illness to others before they exhibit symptoms. 

The key thing is to stay home unless you are an essential worker, doing essential things like grocery shopping, going to the pharmacy or seeking medical care and practice social distancing by ensuring there are at least 6 feet between you and others. 

Equally important is to practice precautions like washing your hands; keep your hands away from your eyes and face; avoiding close contact, sharing cups, or sharing eating utensils; cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, such as computers, table, and doorknobs and practicing good health habits like getting plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.
You’re doing the right thing by quarantining your husband. The best way is to isolate him. If you have a separate bathroom for him, that would be wonderful. Make sure to sanitize the surfaces he touches. He should stay out of the living quarters and the kitchen and just really do your best to keep him isolated. Deliver meals to him, keep kids out of the living areas and find other ways to communicate with him without being in close contact.
Testing is reserved for most people who are most ill. More tests are expected to be available in the new future but people who are not showing symptoms likely will not be tested.
We generally believe that once you have a virus, you develop an immunity to it, but we don’t have enough data on COVID-19. We can assume that is true, but we don’t know how it behaves in the population.
That is a discussion you need to have with your doctor and your employer.
If you’re walking in your neighborhood, there is nothing wrong with that. If you see your neighbor, just remember to keep your distance. I would say get outside and go for a walk. It’s good for you. Going to the grocery store, there’s nothing wrong with that. Remember to keep your distance. If someone is coughing, of course stay away from that person. If you’re using a shopping cart, use a wipe to clean it. Wash your hands when you get home for at least 20 seconds. Dry your hands with a clean towel. Keep your foods and medicine stocked.
We encourage people to limit their exposure to other people. It is best if you can shop when a store is not busy. Make sure you wash your hands after touching commonly touched surfaces in the grocery store. The stores are working hard to keep their areas clean. Most groceries are packaged and not widely handled by the public. Wash fruits and vegetables and wash your hands after that. The risk is a lot lower in the grocery store than in an office setting where there are many different people making copies or touching light switches or the elevator. The longest we hear the virus can survive on a surface is 72 hours or in the air for a couple of hours. If you are concerned about your groceries, you can set them aside for a few days and you’re good to go.
Oakland County restaurants are safe. The food laws protect us. Restaurants may not have workers in the kitchen preparing your food. The managers work hard to make sure that anyone who is sick goes home. They don’t want any food-born illnesses from the restaurants. They take it seriously. In fact, I will be taking food home tonight. You should rest assured we have safe restaurants. The ones that are closed, are closed not because of the kitchen or the food being served, it’s because they may not have take out, drive through or delivery service available.
Talk to your Human Resources director. We want to know if employers are taking this seriously. I think you need to be the squeaky wheel. They need to be responsible to you. Remember, this is new for employers as well as they try to figure this out. Oakland County is working hard at this and I know most employers are too. Maybe employer HR departments will talk to others and share best practices.
Do the best you can to isolate yourself. Are there separate bedrooms or bathrooms? The ill person should not be in the kitchen or touching the sink. The well person should be preparing the meals. Try to use the six-foot social distancing. Put the food on a tray and then leave it. Do the best you can to stay isolated. You’d be amazed how one person can be sick and not pass it on to the other by taking certain precautions.
There are a lot things you can do. You can live with someone who is ill and not get it yourself by practicing social distancing. If possible, isolate that person in their own space. They should be in their own bedroom space and not come out into the living area or into the kitchen. Someone should prepare the food and then drop it off. Don’t linger. If there is more than one bathroom, it’s great for that person to use that one and everyone else use the other. Keep your distance and you’ll be fine.
You’re doing the right thing by quarantining your husband. The best way is to isolate him. If you have a separate bathroom for him, that would be wonderful. Make sure to sanitize the surfaces he touches. He should stay out of the living quarters and the kitchen and just really do your best to keep him isolated. Deliver meals to him, keep kids out of the living areas and find other ways to communicate with him without being in close contact.
Great you’re staying inside. It’s going to be some time, be careful to avoid people and continue practicing social distancing. Have things such as food or medicine delivered to you if possible. It’s ok to go outside but practice social distancing when you do.
Those questions should be posed to your physician. The appointments may seem routine, but they may be important to the physician. Talk it over with the doctor on the phone. The doctor should be able to answer both of those questions.
If you’re walking in your neighborhood, there is nothing wrong with that. If you see your neighbor, just remember to keep your distance. I would say get outside and go for a walk. It’s good for you. Going to the grocery store, there’s nothing wrong with that. Remember to keep your distance. If someone is coughing, of course stay away from that person. If you’re using a shopping cart, use a wipe to clean it. Wash your hands when you get home for at least 20 seconds. Dry your hands with a clean towel. Keep your foods and medicine stocked.
We encourage people to limit their exposure to other people. It is best if you can shop when a store is not busy. Make sure you wash your hands after touching commonly touched surfaces in the grocery store. The stores are working hard to keep their areas clean. Most groceries are packaged and not widely handled by the public. Wash fruits and vegetables and wash your hands after that. The risk is a lot lower in the grocery store than in an office setting where there are many different people making copies or touching light switches or the elevator. The longest we hear the virus can survive on a surface is 72 hours or in the air for a couple of hours. If you are concerned about your groceries, you can set them aside for a few days and you’re good to go.
Oakland County restaurants are safe. The food laws protect us. Restaurants may not have workers in the kitchen preparing your food. The managers work hard to make sure that anyone who is sick goes home. They don’t want any food-born illnesses from the restaurants. They take it seriously. In fact, I will be taking food home tonight. You should rest assured we have safe restaurants. The ones that are closed, are closed not because of the kitchen or the food being served, it’s because they may not have take out, drive through or delivery service available.
Thank you for taking care of a 101-year-old senior. You are right on the money. Be careful with her. We want you to keep her away from others who might want to spend time with her. You must be careful who she is exposed to. It would be good to get some fresh air.
Do the best you can to isolate yourself. Are there separate bedrooms or bathrooms? The ill person should not be in the kitchen or touching the sink. The well person should be preparing the meals. Try to use the six-foot social distancing. Put the food on a tray and then leave it. Do the best you can to stay isolated. You’d be amazed how one person can be sick and not pass it on to the other by taking certain precautions.
I think getting outside is a great idea and I applaud you for that, I applaud you for isolating yourself in your home. Best protection right now is to prevent access to COVID-19 and to protect yourself. When someone passes by on the walking trail, I don’t think that is something I would worry about. Close contact is generally something longer than quickly walking by. I would say keep up the great work, get outside and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air. That’s only going to be great for your health.
There are a lot things you can do. You can live with someone who is ill and not get it yourself by practicing social distancing. If possible, isolate that person in their own space. They should be in their own bedroom space and not come out into the living area or into the kitchen. Someone should prepare the food and then drop it off. Don’t linger. If there is more than one bathroom, it’s great for that person to use that one and everyone else use the other. Keep your distance and you’ll be fine.
You really should consider not visiting aging parents at this time. If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, you absolutely should not visit your parents or grandparents. Isolate from seniors and other family members. Grandparents should not interact with grandchildren, this is critical. You should not be taking grandchildren to see their grandparents. Children under the age of 20 may have mild symptoms and not even recognize it but they may be carriers. It could be mild for the child but require hospitalization for the grandparent.
I know that is concerning for people who work in other homes. Some people may ask how the customer is feeling before going in. That’s certainly something you can do. Also practice social distancing which is something they will appreciate too. You’re probably working in a space where they’re not standing over you and breathing, you should be safe. Remember to wash your hands. You should be fine.
You’re doing the right thing by quarantining your husband. The best way is to isolate him. If you have a separate bathroom for him, that would be wonderful. Make sure to sanitize the surfaces he touches. He should stay out of the living quarters and the kitchen and just really do your best to keep him isolated. Deliver meals to him, keep kids out of the living areas and find other ways to communicate with him without being in close contact.
Absolutely not. Now is not the time to be visiting your grandchildren in person. Young children may have the virus but show few or no symptoms yet can pass the virus onto you. Skype or facetime with them but delay the visit. Tell them you will celebrate another time.
Our preference would be that she stay somewhere else. If she is staying with you, practice social distancing by staying at least six feet away when you can. Be aware of the commonly touched surfaces and clean them often as well as washing your hands. Use separate bathrooms if you can.
It’s always an advantage to have the flu or pneumonia vaccine. If you are unsure as to what vaccines you may need, call the Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533. There is no downside to getting the vaccine.
If your pharmacy has a drive-thru window, take advantage of that. If you must go inside, stay away from others standing at the prescription counter. Call ahead and see if your pharmacy will delivery your prescriptions. Wash your hands. Don’t wait until your medications run out to get them refilled.
All these facilities are working in lockdown mode. No one is allowed in unless they are essential for care and those who come in must be screened. There are assurances between facilities that when a patient leaves one and arrives at another, they are screened when they leave and upon arrival at the new facility. Even employees who come to work every day are being screened before coming in. They are taking extraordinary steps to keep the virus out of facilities.
Talk to your Human Resources director. We want to know if employers are taking this seriously. I think you need to be the squeaky wheel. They need to be responsible to you. Remember, this is new for employers as well as they try to figure this out. Oakland County is working hard at this and I know most employers are too. Maybe employer HR departments will talk to others and share best practices.
Thank you for taking care of a 101-year-old senior. You are right on the money. Be careful with her. We want you to keep her away from others who might want to spend time with her. You must be careful who she is exposed to. It would be good to get some fresh air.
I think getting outside is a great idea and I applaud you for that, I applaud you for isolating yourself in your home. Best protection right now is to prevent access to COVID-19 and to protect yourself. When someone passes by on the walking trail, I don’t think that is something I would worry about. Close contact is generally something longer than quickly walking by. I would say keep up the great work, get outside and enjoy the sunshine and fresh air. That’s only going to be great for your health.
You really should consider not visiting aging parents at this time. If you have symptoms of the coronavirus, you absolutely should not visit your parents or grandparents. Isolate from seniors and other family members. Grandparents should not interact with grandchildren, this is critical. You should not be taking grandchildren to see their grandparents. Children under the age of 20 may have mild symptoms and not even recognize it but they may be carriers. It could be mild for the child but require hospitalization for the grandparent.
Meals on Wheels has a long history of providing healthy, nutritious and safe meals. It’s vitally important to maintain a healthy diet.
No. There will be no water shutoffs during this public health emergency and DTE or Consumers Energy will not shut of your power.
From the SOS website: In accordance with Governor Gretchen Whitmer's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order, all Secretary of State offices are closed until further notice to slow the spread of the coronavirus and protect public health. Late fees will be waived during this period. Customers can complete many transactions using online services and can make an appointment for a future visit (subject to cancellation).
Oakland County restaurants are safe. The food laws protect us. Restaurants may not have workers in the kitchen preparing your food. The managers work hard to make sure that anyone who is sick goes home. They don’t want any food-born illnesses from the restaurants. They take it seriously. In fact, I will be taking food home tonight. You should rest assured we have safe restaurants. The ones that are closed, are closed not because of the kitchen or the food being served, it’s because they may not have take out, drive through or delivery service available.
Consumers Energy and DTE have said there will be no shutoffs at this time. Water Resources Commissioner Jim Nash has said the water will stay on. You won’t lose these services in the short-term. The long-term impact will have to be assessed. Unemployment benefits are being extended. We know the actions we in government take have a real effect on real people and their jobs. There will be further assistance. Stay tuned. Call our Help Hotline if you have an urgent non-health emergency. 248-858-1000.
Sometimes people feel helpless, but we do have the ability to slow the spread of the coronavirus if we take all precautionary measures such as social distancing and washing our hands. If you want to help, if you are feeling healthy and up to it, we’re going to need more blood in metro Detroit. Call the Red Cross and make appointment to give blood. It’s more important now than ever as more of our residents are being hospitalized.
That population is a concern and we want to make sure they are protected. We launched a Restaurant to Shelter program that is getting 700 meals to homeless shelters, so they have the food they need. We have partnered with Beans & Cornbread in Southfield and the Lafayette Market in Pontiac, who are delivering meals to locations served by the Pontiac Community Foundation. We are working with our non-profit community partners to find additional safe housing options.
It depends on a lot of things. We hope to flatten the curve by social distancing. I don’t imagine we’re going to stop social distancing for at least a few months. We have really good tools here. Social distancing got them through a pandemic 100 years ago. It works. Handwashing works. I don’t want you to live in fear every day.
We don’t believe so. We don’t have any scientific articles that provide this data yet but we assume having the virus provides immunity but we can’t say for certain this is the case.
Call your physician and them know. There may be other questions he has for you or you have for the doctor. It is possible your symptoms may be attributed to COVID-19, but they are not classic symptoms. I would call your doctor and discuss it with him. For those of you who don’t have a regular physician, contact Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.
Unfortunately, no. This is not a flu strain. COVID- 19 is a different category and although there are benefits to getting the flu shot. We absolutely don’t want you to get the flu and get worn down or even worse, we have seen some instances where people get the flu and COVID-19. That’s something we don’t want to see.
Those questions should be posed to your physician. The appointments may seem routine, but they may be important to the physician. Talk it over with the doctor on the phone. The doctor should be able to answer both of those questions.
It’s always an advantage to have the flu or pneumonia vaccine. If you are unsure as to what vaccines you may need, call the Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533. There is no downside to getting the vaccine.
If your pharmacy has a drive-thru window, take advantage of that. If you must go inside, stay away from others standing at the prescription counter. Call ahead and see if your pharmacy will delivery your prescriptions. Wash your hands. Don’t wait until your medications run out to get them refilled.
All these facilities are working in lockdown mode. No one is allowed in unless they are essential for care and those who come in must be screened. There are assurances between facilities that when a patient leaves one and arrives at another, they are screened when they leave and upon arrival at the new facility. Even employees who come to work every day are being screened before coming in. They are taking extraordinary steps to keep the virus out of facilities.
Talk to your doctor. A lot of doctors are saying to delay routine appointments for a few months. But maybe they don’t want to delay. Call your doctor.

Due to the significant increase in individuals filing for unemployment benefits, you may experience delays reaching the Unemployment Insurance Agency. 

  • Filing online remains the preferred method for filing a claim at www.michigan.gov/uia
  • Call 1-866-500-0017 between 8 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Saturday.
  • Your social security number 
  • Employment information for the last 18 months (including employer name, address, dates worked and wages) 
  • Your address, phone number and date of birth 
  • Non-Citizens Alien Registration and the expiration date of your work authorization card 
  • Driver’s license or State ID 
  • ​The UIA has developed an alphabetical schedule for workers to file ONLINE for benefits based on the first letter of your last name: 
    • Last names beginning with letters A-L: file claims on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays.
       
    • Last names beginning with letters M-Z: file claims on Sundays, Tuesdays or Thursdays. 

    • Saturdays is available for those who could not file during their allotted window.

    • We’re asking unemployed workers to please reserve the phone lines for those without access to a computer. 

  • The UIA has developed an alphabetical schedule for workers to file BY TELEPHONE for benefits based on the first letter of your last name: 
    • Call Center Filing Schedule for 866-500-0017: 

    • Last names beginning with letters A-L: call on Mondays or Wednesdays between 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. 

    • Last names beginning with letters M-Z: call on Tuesdays or Thursdays between 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. 

    • Fridays between 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Saturdays between 7 a.m. – 2 p.m. are open for anyone who could not file during their allotted days.
​The day or time you file a claim will not impact whether you receive benefits or the benefit amount.
Claims will be back dated to reflect the date that you were laid off or let go from your job due to COVID-19. Your window to apply for benefits has been increased from 14 days to 28 days from your last day of work.

​Please call one of our Oakland County Michigan Works! locations for additional direction. They can be reached at 1-800-285-WORK (9675) or visit www.oaklandcountymiworks.com for a list of locations.

​We encourage everyone to file for unemployment benefits for an official decision. 

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act expands Michigan’s benefits to self-employed, 1099-independent contractors, and low wage workers as well as an increase in weekly pay to all who receive benefits. The application process for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) opens on Monday, March 13 at 8:00 a.m. at www.michigan.gov/uia . Workers need to use the online filing schedule below: 
  • Last names beginning with letters A-L: file claims on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays. 
  • Last names beginning with letters M-Z: file claims on Sundays, Tuesdays, or Thursdays. 
  • Saturdays will be available for anyone to accommodate those who could not file during their allotted window. 
  • We’re asking unemployed workers to please reserve the phone lines for those without access to a computer. 

The UIA has developed an alphabetical schedule for workers to file BY TELEPHONE for benefits based on the first letter of your last name: 

  • Call Center Filing Schedule for 866-500-0017: 
  • Last names beginning with letters A-L: call on Mondays and Wednesdays between 8:00am – 6:00pm. 
  • Last names beginning with letters M-Z: call on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 8:00am – 6:00pm. 
  • Fridays between 8:00am – 6:00pm and Saturdays between 7:00AM – 2:00PM are open for anyone who could not file during their allotted days. 

If you have already filed for unemployment benefits, you DO NOT need to reapply at this time.

​If you are working part-time and collecting unemployment, make sure to report your earnings to MARVIN when claiming that week in benefits. Unemployment benefits are reduced based upon your earnings you receive when working part-time. 

​MARVIN is an automated computer system that lets people who are collecting unemployment benefits report or “certify” by telephone. When you file for unemployment, you will get instructions on how to certify with MARVIN. MARVIN’s telephone number is 1-866-638-3993.

​We recommend that you apply for benefits to find out if you are eligible. Unemployment benefits depend on whether the non-profit is registered as an employer for unemployment insurance purposes. 

​The two best options to reach the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency are by telephone at 1-866-500-0017 or using the "Chat with an Agent" feature in your MIWAM account. Call volumes are extremely high. When you call, consider using the call back feature. If you are placed on hold (they allow 2,000 people on hold at once), stay on the line and UIA will answer your call. Hold times may be lengthy, but if you are in the queue, your call will be answered. 

  • ​If you don’t have your username, please visit your MIWAM home page and select “Forgot your Username?” You will receive an email with additional information.

  •  If you don’t have your password, please visit your MIWAM home page and select “Forgot Your Password?” and follow the prompts to reset your password. 

  •  If you are locked out of your account, you will need to call 1-866-500-0017

​If you provided an email, you can authenticate through that instead of text. If phone is your only option, you will need to speak with a UIA representative at 1-866-500-0017 to change that number. Call volumes are extremely high.

​Visit the MIWAM Account Manager Resource page or call 1-866-500-0017. You may also contact Oakland County Michigan Works! at 1-800-285-WORK (9675) to speak with a staff member who may offer some helpful suggestions.

​Your unemployment benefits are based on your earnings over the last 18 months. The maximum weekly benefit amount in Michigan is $362 per week. You may qualify for less than that amount, depending on your earnings. The Federal Relief for Workers Affected by Coronavirus Act adds an additional $600 per week of Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (PUC) to the weekly benefit amount payable. This is in effect between March 29, 2020 and July 31, 2020.

​Under the Governor’s Executive Order and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, there is a total of 39 weeks of benefits available.

​Yes, you will receive a 1099-G. You have the option to have taxes withheld.

​Every two weeks, you must certify with MARVIN by telephone or online. The preferred way is by direct deposit to your bank or credit union account. You may also choose to receive benefits by a UIA-issued debit card through Bank of America.

​MARVIN is an automated computer system that lets people who are collecting unemployment benefits report or “certify” by telephone. When you file for unemployment, you will get instructions on how to certify with MARVIN. MARVIN’s telephone number is 1-866-638-3993.

​After you certify every two weeks, your unemployment benefits are typically deposited or available within 2-5 days.

Workers already collecting state unemployment benefits have started receiving the additional $600. These payments are disbursed at the same time as your state benefits through direct deposit or debit card after your bi-weekly certification. Please continue to watch your MIWAM account for additional information on your benefit amount. 

Eligible self-employed workers, gig workers, 1099-independent contractors, and low-wage workers will begin receiving their state benefit amount (paid with federal funds) and the $600 federal payment as early as April 20.

All newly eligible workers will need to provide proof of income to receive the maximum amount they are entitled. This could include W-2s, 1099 tax forms, and pay stubs.

As you have seen in recent days, as more tests are taken, the positive case numbers are growing in Oakland County and around the state. We anticipate this will continue and can’t emphasize enough the importance of following the guidance of staying away from public places and following the strict hygiene practices. This virus is in our community and we all need to do our part to slow the spread. There is not one area that is of specific concern over another at this point. But we agree with you that everyone needs to limit travel and businesses need to modify operations. At the County, we have moved most employees to teleworking, and providing online and appointment-based services.
When the Oakland County Health Division receives positive test results they are in touch with the patient and trace back all potential exposures. They provide guidance to individuals or groups of individuals that may have come in close contact with the patient. In the early days of the virus we also provided a list of potential public exposure sites. It is now evident this virus is broadly in our community, so everyone needs to follow the strict guidelines about avoiding public spaces and following the strict hygiene practices no matter where you live. In addition, if you feel sick or are experiencing the symptoms of cough, fever or shortness of breath, stay home and contact your doctor or our Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.
I hope this is an overreaction. We have the power to stop this virus if we do the things we should – abide by the public exposure guidelines, wash our hands, don’t touch our face, stay at home if you’re sick.
We will get to that point when we stop getting new cases. That will be helped by social distancing, hand washing, all the things we can do. We look at the curve from other cities. The earlier the prevention methods are practiced, the better it will be. We want to shorten and flatten the curve. How long it takes will depend on how well we all do at practicing these prevention methods.
In the early days of epidemic, when the health division received a report of a positive test, they would be in touch with the patient and trace back all the potential exposures from that patient. Sometimes we publicized the places of public exposure because we couldn’t contact everybody who may have been in close contact with the patient and wanted the public to be aware. In other cases, we know all the other close contacts and there is no additional risk to the public. Now there are so many cases and it has become so widespread that our ability to contact everyone is not always possible and with the growing number of cases we need to assume it’s everywhere. Assume it’s in your workplace or community. There are no hotspots and no one community is seeing a spike more than another. We all must take these precautionary measures as seriously as we can to limit the spread of the virus.
For a complete list of county services and programs operating, contact the Oakland County hotline at 248-858-1000. The Oakland County Health Division remains open by appointment-only. Health-related questions can be answered by calling Nurse on Call at 1-800-848-5533.
There are points of light during this pandemic such as the individuals who continue to drop off supplies at the Oakland County Farmer’s Market, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. 

So far, people and businesses have dropped off: 
  • Nearly 40,000 N95 masks 
  • 20,000 surgical masks 
  • 6,000 safety glasses 
  • 65,000 pairs of gloves 
  • 2,000 face shields 
To help our residents better understand the spread of the novel coronavirus, we have launched a map of Oakland County that displays the number of cases by zip code.
NO! The map simply lists the Zip code of the infected person. It is not an indication of where the disease may have been transmitted. Health experts tell us you can assume the disease is in the community and it is everywhere. Just because a community has more or fewer cases is not an indication of the relative safety of those communities. Residents are encouraged to wash their hands, practice social distancing and cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Stay home, stay safe.
We cannot explain why one community has more cases than another. We know a part of it has to do with access to testing. It can be an indication of general access to health care insurance or a true measure of what is happening in the community. No matter where you live, stay at home and take precautions to protect yourself, your family and other residents, especially if you must go out.
Talk to your doctor. A lot of doctors are saying to delay routine appointments for a few months. But maybe they don’t want to delay. Call your doctor.
We’re asking that complaints of this nature be forwarded to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office or to call the Oakland County hotline at 248-858-1000 if someone feels a business is not adhering to the governor’s order.
The information is evolving on this issue. When talking about pets, the best advice is to call your veterinarian.
When you travel to another state, you may have to rely on a medical system that you are not familiar with and medical providers that aren’t familiar with you or your medical history. Going to a state with a lot of visitors may be an increasing burden on the health care system there. In Florida, they have not closed restaurants as of today but they have closed bars or night clubs. So, there are still a lot of people gathering in public places. Our advice to our own employees is to not travel. Don’t expose self to others. If you absolutely must travel, equip yourself with information before making the decision. Nurse on Call is happy to talk to you, 1-800-848-5533. Also, text 'oakgov' to 28748 to sign up and we’ll send info as we get it and guidelines change.
Please call 248-858-1000 if you have additional questions.