State Watch

NJ officials assume ‘COVID-19 is in most, if not all’ nursing homes

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New Jersey authorities are “making the assumption that COVID-19 is in most, if not all” nursing homes in the state, an official said Monday.

Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli announced at a press briefing that 324 of the state’s 375 nursing homes have confirmed cases, NJ.com reported. Less than two weeks ago, only 81 of the homes had confirmed cases. 

“We’re making the assumption that COVID-19 is in most, if not all, of our nursing homes,” Persichilli said at the briefing.

More than 5,200 residents in these homes have tested positive for the coronavirus, amounting to 10 percent of the nursing home population, according to NJ.com.

Persichilli’s announcement followed New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy’s (D) release of the day’s numbers, up to 64,584 cases and 2,443 deaths.  Twenty-nine of the 94 new deaths occurred in long-term care facilities. 

Due to privacy rules, the state is not releasing the names of the nursing homes with positive cases. But the health commissioner said any facility that is not following state guidelines will be identified, according to NJ.com.

Under a New Jersey Department of Health order from earlier this month, nursing homes are required to let patients, staff and their families know when a positive case of coronavirus arises in the home within 24 hours.

State agencies have reported more than 2,300 nursing homes with at least one coronavirus case across the country, according to data analyzed by USA Today. More than 3,000 people have died in these homes across 37 states.

Tags Coronavirus COVID-19 long-term care facilities New Jersey NJ.com. nursing homes

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