The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating effect in nursing homes and long-term care facilities, causing the deaths of more than 84,000 residents and staff, according to an Oct. 8 analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation—including 991 in Mississippi. Yet federal policymakers have been slow to respond to this crisis, and no state has done a good enough job to stem the loss of life. AARP has called for the enactment of a 5-point plan to protect nursing home and long-term care facility residents, and has fought for public reporting of nursing home COVID-19 cases and deaths.
Using data collected by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services—which is self-reported by nursing homes—the AARP Public Policy Institute, in collaboration with the Scripps Gerontology Center at Miami University in Ohio, created the AARP Nursing Home COVID-19 Dashboard to provide four-week snapshots of the virus’ infiltration into nursing homes and impact on nursing home residents and staff. Notably, the first release of the dashboard on October 14 reveals that nursing homes in every state reported shortages of PPE, ranging from 8% of facilities in the best-performing states, to 60% in the lowest-performing state. The dashboard also compared state and national data on COVID-19 cases and deaths, staff cases and staffing shortages.
For the period from August 24-Sept. 20, AARP’s dashboard reports that Mississippi had:
• 5.4 of COVID cases per 100 residents
• 1.03 of COVID deaths per 100 residents
• 3.8 of staff cases per 100 residents
• 24.0% of nursing homes without a 1 week supply of PPE
• 37.7% of nursing homes with staffing shortages
Full data for Mississippi, and a comparison to national data for each indicator, is available at aarp.org/ms.
More resources and information on COVID-19 and nursing homes can be found at aarp.org/nursinghomes
This story is provided by AARP Mississippi. Visit the AARP Mississippi page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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