California Releases List of Nursing Homes with COVID-19
CALIFORNIA- Kqed.com writes that over 21-percent of nursing homes across California have confirmed cases of coronavirus. The governor recently promised to publish the list of impacted facilities and followed through this week with a report. The California Department of Social Services also made public some information about fatalities at long-term care facilities. However, the reports still fail to provide a complete picture of the outbreak in this vulnerable population.*
Only facilities with over six residents are included on the list leaving small facilities entirely out of the data. The list of facilities fails to give updates on deaths, but only lists the locations that have reported cases within one 24-hour period. While no homes in Kern and Fresno counties are on the list, the health departments from those counties stated that the virus is surging within their borders.
Thousands of people are ill in the state's facilities, and despite efforts to release information, local policies, concerns over patient privacy, and difficulty completing tests have made it impossible to capture the extent of the infection. Long term care facilities already had an obligation to inform families, regulators, and county health departments when a virus outbreak took place. However, the information did not have to be made available to the public.
The spread of the pandemic through these homes has led to anxiety for many families and left some unable to say goodbye to dying loved ones. One family reported that they were unable to get in touch with a sick relative in the Gateway Care Rehabilitation Center despite four days of trying. The victim died without hearing from family though relatives stated that they kept attempting to call but were left with the phone ringing and never being answered.
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