Increase in Nursing Homes Reporting COVID-19 Positive Cases

Increase in Nursing Homes Reporting COVID-19 Positive Cases

The State of Washington is starting to see an increase in COVID-19 cases in long term care facilities.  Over the past month, many of the facilities now reporting positive cases had been COVID free. The State is also seeing case increases in the general public.  See the graph below, provided by the Washington State Hospital Association (WSHA), that shows cases across the state are on the rise and increasing quickly.

 

 

 

 

The chart at the bottom with the blue and red squares shows the number of new cases per day.  Dark blue shows 0 new cases while dark red shows >500 new cases.  For the entire month of July, the state has experienced over 500 new cases per day. Case trends are moving in the wrong direction undoubtedly attributable to the reopening of certain businesses and larger gatherings of families and friends.  

 

 

 

 

You can view the above chart and data from WSHA here – https://www.wsha.org/for-patients/coronavirus/coronavirus-tracker/?fbclid=IwAR2kW-VJy44ATxkm8toRuAzfOEtuXSdW41Pm8lBhFtjpzuSCwLxjh_vsT3E

King County is reporting that for the month of June there were 11 facilities that had started a second wave of infections and in July that number rose to with 15 facilities.  This means these facilities had no new cases for at least a month before COVID-19 was reintroduced.

To stop the reintroduction of COVID-19 into your facility, we urge all staff to follow pertinent guidelines and rules.  This includes masking and social distancing of staff within your facility.  This applies to break/lunch rooms as well as break areas outside of the facility.  Please reemphasize to staff the importance of following mask and social distancing guidelines while not at work given the vulnerabilities of the people that live at their place of work.  All it takes is one staff member who is contagious, but asymptomatic, to bring COVID-19 into the facility and infect co-workers and residents.  The data shows that the 15-20 age group is leading the growth of cases across the State.

There is also concern about reintroducing recovering COVID-19 patients back into non-COVID dedicated living environments too soon and while they are still shedding the virus.  Please follow all CDC recommended guidelines which can be found here – https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/disposition-hospitalized-patients.html

On a phone call with DOH this past week we learned that, unless interrupted, Washington is one month behind where Florida is currently.  We need everyone’s help to slow the spread of this virus; we can do this if everyone shares this same commitment and practices social distancing and wears masks.  We are in this together and we can and must defeat COVID.

 

Questions?

Contact: 

David Carter | Director, Health Care Finance & Policy

C 360.888.5702

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