Of the U.S.’s more than 116,000 Covid-19 deaths, over 50,000 died in nursing homes or other long-term care facilities, according to a Tuesday analysis by The Wall Street Journal, reaffirming concerns that the country’s oldest and most vulnerable have not been adequately protected during the pandemic.
The WSJ reported more than 250,000 residents and staffers at long-term care facilities contracted Covid-19, resulting in at least 50,919 deaths (the death toll is likely higher due to lags and differences in state reporting).
As for how the pandemic claimed so many from nursing homes, fingers are being pointed on both sides of the aisle.
Trump has sourced the issue to facilities with low federal ratings for infection control and some Democratic governors who required nursing homes to take recovering Covid-19 patients.
Democrats have criticized the Trump administration’s response while advocates for the elderly say the federal government hasn’t provided sufficient virus testing and protective gear to allow nursing homes to operate safely.
POLITICO reported Monday that only a little more than half of the nation’s nursing homes received inspections to make sure staff are following proper procedures to prevent coronavirus transmission, a lapse that critics say prevented states from identifying issues at a crucial time.