CDC MMWR on Nursing Home Residents and Staff

CDC MMWR on Nursing Home Residents and Staff

CDC posted an early release of a Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) entitled Rates of COVID-19 Among Residents and Staff Members in Nursing Homes – United States, May 25 – November 22, 2020. The report examines NHSN data on nursing home cases and HHS data on community prevalence for May through November 2020. Data analyses found that during the time period of May 25 – November 22, reported cases were comparable for residents (51.8% of all reported cases) and staff (48.2% of all reported cases).

Cases among residents and staff showed similar trends, increasing in June and July, decreasing in August and September, then increasing again in November. These trends were similar to population trends in the surrounding community. The report notes that while there were regional variances in cases and trends, in all regions, trends in nursing homes cases were similar to those of the surrounding community, suggesting that increases in community rates might influence nursing home rates. We knew this, and now we have it in writing in an official way.

The report recommends nursing home mitigation strategies include a comprehensive plan to monitor transmission in the surrounding community and minimize high-risk exposures within the nursing home. Notably, high-risk exposures include non-patient contacts among staff, including household and social contacts, with potential lapses in adherence to mask use and social distancing. The report presented the following strategies:

  • Educate staff on the risk of community exposure.
  • Ensure access to adequate PPE.
  • Adhere to CMS guidance for routine testing of staff.
  • Isolate newly admitted/re-admitted residents whose COVID status is unknown.




Laura Hofmann, MSN, RN – Director of Clinical and Nursing Facility Regulatory Services
c: 425-231-4804

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