University of Michigan Health at Sparrow Children’s Center at Full Capacity amid surge in RSV Infections


Published: Friday, November 11, 2022

LANSING, MI – A statewide surge in respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, among young children is causing a pediatric bed shortage at University of Michigan Health at Sparrow Children’s Center and longer wait times at E.W. Sparrow Hospital’s Emergency Department in Lansing.

Sparrow is seeking the community’s help in preventing the spread of respiratory illnesses and urging families to consider appropriate sites of care besides the Emergency Department.

Sparrow is seeing a daily average of 60 new cases of RSV, nearly double from this time last year – and leaders at the University of Michigan Health at Sparrow Children’s Hospital anticipate even higher volumes entering flu season and a potential spike of COVID cases this winter. There are only a handful of pediatric intensive care beds available at hospitals throughout Michigan. There's no vaccine for RSV, but getting your kids vaccinated for other viruses is recommended. There are other options for parents.

“The greatest thing parents can do is frequent hand washing,” said Steve Martin, M.D., E.W. Sparrow Hospital, Interim Chief Medical Officer and Co-Director of University of Michigan Health at Sparrow Children’s Center.

Sparrow is hard at work providing leading-edge and compassionate care to every child, and to ensure those who need a pediatric bed gets one. Patients can find the right level of care at one of many other Sparrow sites without having to wait for an open bed. If children are showing signs of a respiratory illness, parents should call their Sparrow Medical Group primary care provider first to determine whether they need an in-person or On-Demand visit with their doctor, or go to a Sparrow Urgent Care, or walk-in clinic, or seek emergency treatment.

To learn more about RSV, how to prevent spread, and what to consider before a trip to the Emergency Department, visit


Sparrow is Mid-Michigan’s premier healthcare organization and includes hospitals in Lansing, Carson City, Charlotte, Ionia, and St. Johns, as well as Sparrow Specialty Hospital, Physicians Health Plan, Sparrow Care Network, Sparrow Medical Group and the Michigan Athletic Club. Sparrow is affiliated with Michigan Medicine through the Sparrow Children’s Center and with Michigan State University’s three human health colleges. Through these partnerships and the dedication of our 10,000 Caregivers, Sparrow pursues a vision to be nationally recognized as a leader in quality and Patient experience. For more information, visit