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COVID-19 and Elderly Deaths

According the CDC, any case of COVID-19 even one needs to be reported to families or representatives within 12 hours. Also, the nursing home needs to also report to the CDC and needs to be made public.

Lax Infection Control Before Coronavirus

Even before the outbreak, many of the nursing homes across the United States are understaffed and had lax infection control. Now with the lack of supplies or testing, the most high risk of dying from the disease have little to protect them. Currently, routine health and safety inspections are suspended by the government. However, there have been 100 inspection reports of the minimal documented visits. Scarily, many facilities are are failing to stem the spread. Therefore, the CDC announced in May 2020 that all family members and the CDC need to know of any COVID-19 positives.

Have to Report

According to the New York Times, in over 4,000 nursing homes across the U.S., almost 37,000 staff and residents have the virus. Over 7,000 have died from it. The most at risk from the disease are those over 65 and with an underlying medical condition. This includes many residents. Nursing homes have to report this information to families and the CDC. However, many are still trying to hide it.

Silent Crisis

Before a facility in New Jersey made headlines of nearly 17 bodies in the facility’s morgue without family members or nursing homes being notified. Residents made repeated calls to the police. The calls detailed symptoms of the the virus, however the nursing home denied the residents to go to the hospital. Once the police department also responded to a fire alarm at a facility. When they arrived, they were told it was a false alarm and dismissed them.
Reporters found that the nursing home was understaffed, there was a lack of protective equipment, and gross patient neglect. Many residents were not even being fed. Nursing home residents could not even call their families for help.
Unfortunately, this same scenario is happening all of the country.

Limited Inspections

In March, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the federal agency that regulates nursing homes, instructed state officials to stop conducting routine health and safety inspections. The order was to protect residents. CNN has uncovered at least seven nursing homes citied with serious violations related to COVID-19. Also, 100 facilities had serious deficiencies related to infection control. Patients even without COVID-19 symptoms are being transferred to isolation to die. Plus, there is no documentation. Therefore, families feel stuck and do not know what to do.

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