COVID-19 patients sent to struggling nursing homes during surge

7/16/20 WFXT FOX25 COVID-19 patients sent to struggling nursing homes during surge - Kerry Kavanaugh, Jason Solowski, and Patricia Alulema https://www.boston25news.com/news/25-investigates/25-investigates-covid-19-patients-sent-struggling-nursing-homes-during-surge/OOYE5OAZO5AB7OEIJEAE3P3NUM/ At the end of March, state health officials needed a plan to preserve capacity levels at hospitals. That’s when they turned to nursing homes. “They were part of the backup plan,” said Arlene Germain, Policy Director with the Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. “But I don’t know why they were part of the backup plan. It’s just common sense that you don’t commingle COVID patients with such vulnerable nursing homes residents.” …For months, Germain’s group has been questioning the state’s plan to put coronavirus positive patients in facilities with “most vulnerable to this deadly disease.” …25 Investigates has learned pretty much any nursing home was eligible and they received financial incentives. Facilities only needed to fill out an attestation form, stating they have a COVID-19 isolation space - either a floor, wing or room - and that they had the capacity to accept new residents....
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Over 4,000 People Died Of Coronavirus In Massachusetts Nursing Homes

5/28/20 WBZ-TV State Data: Over 4,000 People Died Of Coronavirus In Massachusetts Nursing Homes - Christina Hager https://boston.cbslocal.com/2020/05/28/coronavirus-state-data-4000-people-died-massachusetts-nursing-homes/ On Thursday, Massachusetts residents got a first look at the toll the coronavirus pandemic has taken on Massachusetts nursing homes. So far, 4,041 people have died at elderly care facilities across the state. More than 80 nursing homes have had 20 or more deaths. The Department of Public Health released a database showing how many people have died at each facility, after advocates begged for the numbers. “Wow, I had no idea the extent. This is information we’ve been looking for two months,” said Alison Weingartner, executive director of Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. “It’s too little too late. We still need more information to understand the extent of the problem because they still haven’t broken down the numbers between residents and staff.”   ...
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Hundreds of nursing homes ran short on staff, protective gear as more than 30,000 residents died during pandemic

6/4/20 Washington Post Hundreds of nursing homes ran short on staff, protective gear as more than 30,000 residents died during pandemic - Peter Whoriskey, Debbie Cenziper, Will Englund, & Joel Jacobs https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/06/04/nursing-homes-coronavirus-deaths/ The CMS should have held nursing homes accountable for lapses in infection control and prevention long before the pandemic, said Arlene Germain, policy director of Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. Even as the coronavirus spread in March and April, nearly 600 nursing homes were cited by government inspectors for violating federal standards meant to prevent and control the spread of infections. She said the deaths of more than 600[typo in article] nursing home residents and staff members could have been mitigated if homes were better prepared and had access to supplies and testing. “It’s heartbreaking,” she said of the death count. “It shouldn’t have happened.”...
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