Washington D.C., Mar 11, 2020 / 14:00 pm
Nursing care facilities around the country are ramping up efforts to protect their residents as the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase. This week, one religious order told CNA how they are working to protect the elderly in their care.
At least 1,088 people have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the United States and 31 people are reported to have died from the virus. More than half of the deaths, 19, were connected to a single nursing home in the city of Kirkland, WA.
In this one nursing home, 55 people contracted the virus, the second-largest number of cases in the United States connected to a single location. Across the state, 10 different elderly care facilities have residents who have tested positive for COVID-19.
The elderly are particularly vulnerable to coronavirus, with a fatality rate of nearly 15% of cases. Conversely, those under the age of 30 have almost all recovered from the disease.
The Little Sisters of the Poor, a religious order dedicated to serving the elderly poor, told CNA on Tuesday that they are taking extra measures to keep the residents of their homes safe from illness, including coronavirus.
No cases have been discovered at any of the order’s more than two dozen nursing homes in the United States.
“We are following all of the guidance being given in order to keep our elderly residents as safe as possible,” Sr. Constance Veit, LSP, told CNA. Sr. Constance is the communications contact for the order’s Jeanne Jugan Residence in Washington, DC.
The American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living has issued many guidelines and guidances to skilled nursing facilities on what they should do to prevent the further spread of coronavirus.