How many nursing homes have COVID-19 problems? Don't ask the government

The lag in data collection is just one of a number of bottlenecks in the effort to slow the virus' deadly spread in nursing homes across the U.S.

5/8/2020 1:36:00 PM

More than two weeks and 13,000 long-term care deaths later, the government still does not know how many U.S. nursing homes have had coronavirus outbreaks or the number of residents who have died.

The lag in data collection is just one of a number of bottlenecks in the effort to slow the virus' deadly spread in nursing homes across the U.S.

by the Kaiser Family Foundation.In Florida, news organizations had to sue to get access to information specific to nursing homes. In New York, because of a new reporting system, the state attributed an additional 1,700 nursing home COVID-19 deaths to its tally this week. In Michigan, where the virus has rampaged through 486 nursing homes, the state has yet to release any data on deaths. Missouri told NBC News that it isn't tracking those deaths at all.

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Nursing home administrators have also made urgent pleas for personal protective gear and universal, regular testing, which Maryland, West Virginia and two other states have made mandatory."Our leaders did not plan, did not listen, and did not prioritize the lives of older Americans," said Kate Smith Sloan, president and CEO of LeadingAge.

The federal government has yet to step in to fill the critical gap, and many states have been unable to meet the needs on their own, according to advocates and industry groups."I would have a daily call with every nursing home operating in the country to identify those needs," said Andy Slavitt, who led CMS during the Obama administration."The first time we hear about a nursing home shouldn't be when 50 people have died."

The White House announced April 30 that the Federal Emergency Management Agency would ship a seven-day supply of critical gloves and masks to nursing homes nationwide. But as of this week, FEMA says, just 5 percent of the shipments are out the door. The second seven-day shipment won't arrive until July.

April 21, 202002:16An administrator who runs a nursing home with 700 residents in upstate New York told NBC News on Thursday that he was grateful for the large shipment of equipment he just got from FEMA — but he has no coronavirus cases in his facility.

The federal government needs to deliver on its promises for greater help, said Walter Ramos, president and CEO of Rogerson Communities, a Boston nonprofit that runs long-term care facilities."Reporting has to come with results," Ramos said."I do need that reporting to mean something to the people we are reporting to — I need the rapid testing. I need the PPE."

A White House eventAccording to a recent NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll, at least 19 percent of Americans are worried about"a family member in a nursing home or long-term care facility."The Trump administration held a hastily arranged event for"senior citizens" at the White House on April 30. The president unveiled a commission on nursing home quality, but as of his announcement no members had been selected or announced. The contract to run the commission was awarded the same day its creation was announced.

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Meanwhile, reports have emerged of questionable deaths from nursing homes. In some cases, outbreaks are alleged to have been hidden from families until it was too late.On April 19, the federal government announced new requirements for all nursing homes to inform residents and their families about infections and outbreaks inside facilities. Current federal guidelines require nursing homes to inform only the relatives of individual patients who become infected, not all families.

Read more: MSNBC »

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Don’t ask NY NYGovCuomo or GavinNewsom ... you’ll never see those real numbers! The government's cavalier attitude and behavior is telling. They know much more than they're saying. This is one reason that it all seems so absurdly ridiculous to us, we're not in on the truth. So what do they know?How long have they known it? And where in hell is it heading?

Governor Cuomo's finally deciding it is a bad idea to send people back to nursinghomes with covid-19, idiot Mainstreammedia promoting the guy with worst infection rate in the nation with zero stockpile and billions in deficit before the coronavirus! RIDICULOUS Trump should demand Barr get a court order.

Cuomo killed so many of our elderly Welcome to third world. Is there any leadership anywhere in this bleak administration? Prayers for everyone at the nursing homes around the world to recover. For those who have passed, RIP. Prayers for the caregivers too because that's a hard job. Well, it spread from NY whose gov allowed sick people into nursing homes. People fled to other states. But MSM will ignore this a praise Cuomo even though he is a complete failure

Because at the moment pardoning criminals and campaigning for his throne are more important than the lives he was sworn in protect. When you fire all the experts or make them leave with the your horrible behavior of the president this is what you get. We know in Illinois. But we don't have a reality star as an alleged leader.

And, the reason we don't know is that journalism is dead. They have been absolutely worthless during this pandemic and still apparently remain useless to the public. So sad.l I guess most of the governments still not taking this matter as serious as it should! In any event we must learn something from Taiwan.

They don't care. This is an inconvenience to Trump, nothing more. He only wants to get back to his rallies. Because that's what a game show host does best. Trump does NOT want the American public to know. Ask the state for that data, not federal requirement or just ask New York how many were sent to die knowing they had the virus when sent to the home, opposite of what Florida did/

NYGovCuomo keeps shoving Covid patients in nursing homes.. who the hell knows.. This seems to indicate poor management and inadequate isolation and treatment to minimize the spread of a contagion within a facility Don’t know or don’t care🤔 Not a single mention in this article of Andrew Cuomo forcing New York nursing homes and assisted living facilities to admit coronavirus-positive patients. Weird.

Somehow you’ll blame Trump 🤪🤤 Let’s start with why a GOV would mandate Covid patients be housed in nursing homes. Maybe Cuomo can offer some insight

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