Nursing Home COVID Deaths, Cases Continue To Rise

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Coronavirus cases continue to rise in nursing homes, increasing to 7,875 from 6,947 in a week, while deaths also rose to 2,190 from 1,927 during the same span, according to figures released Friday by the state Department of Public Health (DPH).

Nursing home deaths represent 60% of all COVID-related deaths, figures released show.  For the week, 263 nursing home residents died compared to 300 the week before.

Of the state’s 213 nursing homes, 165 (77%) have at least one confirmed case of COVID-19, up from 163 a week ago.

Riverside Health and Rehab Center in East Hartford reported the most COVID-19 deaths with 57, followed by Kimberly Hall North in Windsor and Abbott Terrace Health Center of Waterbury, with 43 each; and Shady Knoll Health Center in Seymour, with 35, according to DPH.

The nursing home with the highest number of residents with COVID-19 is Arden House in Hamden, with 170, followed by Litchfield Woods in Torrington, with 127; and Riverside Health and Rehab Center in East Hartford and St. Joseph’s Center in Trumbull, with 121 each, according to the data.

Federal workplace safety inspectors are investigating the death or hospitalization of at least three Connecticut elder care workers due to complications from COVID-19.

The investigations come as union officials say at least six unionized nursing home employees have died from coronavirus.

The state is in the process of testing every resident in every nursing home for coronavirus, state officials have said.

This week, Dr. Deidre Gifford, acting commissioner of public health and commissioner of the Department of Social Services, said that the state is conducting a “point prevalence survey in every nursing home and testing every resident” to better understand the rate of infection.

The testing is also being done to provide information to facilities so that they can cohort COVID positive residents from residents who are virus free, which will further decrease the chance of spread, Gifford said.

On Monday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued new guidelines for the reopening of nursing homes. CMS recommends “baseline” testing of residents (which CT is doing) and staff followed by weekly testing of staff. Facilities should ensure that they have adequate protective gear. CMS also recommends that nursing homes be “among the last” of entities in the state to reopen.   The guidelines are nonbinding, leaving it up to each state to determine when nursing homes should be reopened to visitors.

On Friday, DPH released a list of assisted living facilities with COVID-19 residents. As of May 20, there were 79 facilities with 973 cases, and a total of 306 deaths. You can view the list and details by clicking here.

The most recent figures on nursing homes from DPH are below:

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