Decreased Inspections of Nursing Homes: Cause of Increasing Deaths?

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Health Editor’s Note: Very early in this pandemic nursing homes and facilities closed their doors to visitors.  This was a good move.  What went lacking was the fact that the healthcare workers, who would leave at the end of their shift and return the next day, were out and about and being exposed to coronavirus.  Since this virus could be spread by anyone who had it, even if there were no symptoms of illness, an infected worker could unknowingly spread the virus to the most  fragile of our population. Once the virus was loose in a place where all the residents are old, often ill, have pre-existing medical conditions, at the mercy of others to take care of them it was only a matter of time until most of the population would be infected.   In March Trump paused yearly nursing home inspections.  Another crassly stupid move from the ‘leader” who denigrates science and medicine at every turn….Carol

Nursing homes go unchecked as fatalities mount

By RACHEL ROUBEIN and MAGGIE SEVERNS/Politico

Thousands of nursing homes across the country have not been checked to see if staff are following proper procedures to prevent coronavirus transmission, a form of community spread that is responsible for more than a quarter of the nation’s Covid-19 fatalities.



Only a little more than half of the nation’s nursing homes had received inspections, according to data released earlier this month, which prompted a fresh mandate from Medicare and Medicaid chief Seema Verma that states complete the checks by July 31 or risk losing federal recovery funds.

A POLITICO survey of state officials, however, suggests that the lack of oversight of nursing homes has many roots. Many states that were hit hard by the virus say they chose to provide protective gear to frontline health workers rather than inspectors, delaying in-person checks for weeks if not months. Some states chose to assess facilities remotely, conducting interviews over the phone and analyzing documentation, a process many experts consider inadequate.

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