The heavy toll that the COVID-19 pandemic has taken on older Americans highlights the need to strengthen the nation’s safety net for those requiring long-term services and supports, according to a new report in the Milbank Quarterly.
The report proposes a system of universal coverage to support long-term care for all older Americans. But we’ve been down this road before — trying for decades to create a viable, cohesive long-term care system. What makes anyone think things will be different this time around? Continue reading
Photo: NIAID via FlickrTransmission electron micrograph of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, isolated from a patient.
It can be difficult in normal times to get reliable, timely information from many long-term care facilities without filing FOIAs or diving deep into inspection reports. During this COVID-19 pandemic, it can be nearly impossible. So when Kaiser Health News’ Rachana Pradhan wanted to learn whether, and how, nursing homes were conducting all-important testing of residents and staff, it’s not surprising she ran into a few roadblocks. Continue reading
The COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the globe has been particularly fatal to older adults. Outbreaks in long-term care facilities like the one in Kirkland, Wash., drive home the extreme vulnerability of our nation’s elders.
The CDC’s March 28 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) looked specifically at severe outcomes in older adults from COVID-19. The first preliminary reports from China found fatality rate was highest among patients over 60, particularly among those with underlying conditions; the rate was as high as 27% for those 85 and older. Continue reading