Impact of COVID-19 on Nursing Homes & Assisted Living Facilities
COVID-19 has had a unique impact on nursing homes and assisted living facilities over the last couple of years. These spaces have become locations for the virus to rapidly spread and present unique challenges to overcome due to being filled with those at high risk for severe or fatal COVID-19-related complications. Studies have confirmed that COVID-19 cases increase more rapidly in nursing homes and assisted living facilities than in the community.
If you’re looking for more information on the long-term impacts of COVID-19 on nursing homes and assisted living facilities, contact a J J Insurance, Inc. agent.
Case Reporting and Testing
Nursing homes and facilities have all been hit hard by COVID-19. Not only have residents and patients been impacted, but the family, caregivers and staff of these facilities have felt the effects of the pandemic. The reporting of deaths in these facilities across the nation has been staggered due to late reporting requirements. The reporting of COVID-19 cases within nursing homes was not required until May 8, 2020. This caused a skew of numbers and led to issues, such as staffing shortages and lack of resources.
Nursing homes and assisted living facilities struggled to control the spread and rapid increase in death, partly due to a lack of asymptomatic testing. Workers were able to come into the facilities unknowingly with COVID-19 due to being asymptotic and spread the virus to the most susceptible patients.
Medicare and Medicaid
The COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the Medicare system. Two in five Medicare beneficiaries in nursing homes were diagnosed with COVID-19 in 2020, but early numbers are a rough estimate due to inconsistent and unavailable testing. This created an increased call to action to mitigate the pandemic effects to prevent the long-term impact from creating further damage. The mortality rate within nursing homes went from 17% in 2019 to 22% in 2020. This exposed weaknesses in the medical system, particularly for nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
Overall, the COVID-19 pandemic had a massive effect on nursing homes and assisted living facilities. The recent developments in the pandemic, particularly with the Omnicron variant, have exposed the importance of testing for asymptotic cases within these facilities, the impact these scenarios have on Medicare, and the vulnerability this population faces. For more information on the effects COVID-19 has had or will continue to have on nursing homes and assisted living facilities, contact your J J Insurance, Inc. agent today.