Montana’s care homes struggle with staffing and ever-changing regulations as COVID-19 cases rise | State & Regional

During the first three months of the pandemic, Coe kept a bed in his office because he didn’t want to infect his family and wanted to reassure his staff he was there for them.

“Health care and our industry didn’t bring this to the state, but we’re living with choices everybody makes whether you gown up, mask up, you wash your hands — whatever happens, if it gets into the facility, we have to live with whatever happens,” Coe said.

‘Staff doesn’t grow on trees’

The Montana Health Care Association serves long-term care facilities in the state, and many have reached out to get answers and support, according to Rose Hughes, the association’s executive director.

“To me it has just brought forth a whole new experience and lots of questions about how should these things be handled,” Hughes said in an interview in September. “What can you do? Because staff doesn’t grow on trees and facilities have trouble hiring staff as it is.”

Hughes said that several assisted living facilities have reached out for help.

She said the association has asked DPHHS multiple times for written guidance for assisted living facilities.

“Usually the response was, well, they need to follow CDC guidance,” she said. But, trying to navigate the CDC website for answers can be daunting.

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Nursing Homes Are Lower Percentage Of New Cases

ATLANTA, GA — While the daily number of new COVID-19 cases and deaths has leveled off in Georgia over the last few weeks, another important metric — the percentage of new cases occurring in nursing homes and other group-living facilities — has dropped.

Working from data supplied by the Georgia Department of Public Health as of Wednesday, Atlanta news station WXIA-TV reported that new cases at long-term care facilities comprise only 4 percent of the total. In May, it was 13 percent of the total.

Still, the absolute number of elderly Georgians who die from COVID-19 remains high. Of the roughly 7,300 deaths from COVID-19 in Georgia so far, about 94 percent of them are 60 or older.


The Georgia Department of Public Health in Atlanta reported a total of 329,032 confirmed cases of COVID-19 at 2:50 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9. According to the health department’s website, that includes 1,695 newly confirmed cases over the last 24 hours.

Georgia also reported 7,348 deaths so far from COVID-19, with 56 more deaths recorded in the last 24 hours. In addition, the state reported 29,510 hospitalizations — 124 more than the day before — and 5,482 admissions so far to intensive-care units.

No information is available from Georgia about how many patients have recovered.

Counties in or near metro Atlanta and other metropolitan areas continue to have the highest number of positives, with Fulton County still in the lead.

  1. Fulton County: 28,834 cases — 253 new

  2. Gwinnett County: 28,593 cases — 132 new

  3. Cobb County: 20,367 cases — 73 new

  4. DeKalb County: 19,571 cases — 98 new

  5. Hall County: 9,848 cases — 75 new

  6. Chatham County: 8,809 — 54 new

  7. Richmond County: 7,424 — 54 new

  8. Clayton County: 7,347 — 58 removed

  9. Cherokee County: 6,393

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Care homes in England fear new Covid-19 cases as 90% of test results delayed

Nearly nine out of 10 Covid-19 tests taken under the system used by care homes in England were returned after the government’s 48-hour target in September, official figures reveal.

a man and a woman sitting in a room: Photograph: Lindsey Parnaby/AFP via Getty Images

© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Lindsey Parnaby/AFP via Getty Images

The performance of the NHS test-and-trace system has sparked warnings from care managers that continued delays will increase the risk of infection among their vulnerable residents.

At the end of the first month in which tests were routinely provided to care home staff and residents, 87% of those carried out at satellite testing centres, predominantly used by care homes, were returned after more than two days. Over half took more than three days to come back.

Related: Health officials fear de-prioritising of Covid testing in care homes in England

Ministers had promised weekly testing in care homes in the summer, but it only began comprehensively in September. The health minister James Bethelltold parliament 48 hours was the target for getting results back.

Care workers are now being tested weekly and residents monthly, but managers are concerned that delays of over a week in some cases in receiving results mean asymptomatic staff could be spreading infection.

Recorded infections in care homes have been falling slightly, according to Public Health England figures, but there are fears that in areas of rising community infection, such as the north of England, once the virus gets into homes there are likely to be increases in cases.

Mark Adams, the chief executive of Community Integrated Care, a national charity that is one of the biggest care providers in Liverpool, said it currently ttook three and a half days on average to get results. Only one in five weekly staff tests were coming back with the government’s 48-hour target.

There have only been a handful of positive

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The Latest: Concern over rise in virus cases in US Northeast | Business News

That decision was based on letting people “go ahead and live,” DeWine said.

“Allowing some more people to go root for the Bengals, go root for the Browns, is something that people feel very passionately about-—we think they can do it safely,” the governor said.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missouri on Thursday reported an increase of more than 1,500 confirmed COVID—19 cases and the highest number of hospitalizations for confirmed or suspected cases since the pandemic began.

Data from the Missouri Department of Health and Human Services showed a total of 137,156 confirmed cases and 2,259 deaths since March. That was 1,505 more cases and 23 more deaths than reported Wednesday.

The department also reported 1,344 Missourians were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID–19 cases on Wednesday — up from 1,241 the previous day. The state averaged 1,204.9 hospitalizations in the previous seven days.

One of the largest hospitals in southwestern Missouri has seen a big rise in hospitalizations. CoxHealth spokeswoman Kaitlyn McConnell said the Springfield hospital on Thursday was treating a record 93 COVID-19 patients.

“Because this surge came to the Midwest later than other parts of the country, we were able to prepare by aggressively gathering PPE and expanding our facilities, and are currently managing through this crisis,” McConnell said in an email. “However, we are distressed by the rising number of cases and what they mean in our community. We ask our community, and those across the country, to continue to take preventative measures against the spread of this virus.”

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The Latest: Pennsylvania sees most confirmed cases in months | National News

ROME — Italy has added Belgium, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom to its list of countries at risk for the coronavirus.

Visitors from the four countries, as well as previous list members Spain and France, must be tested on arrival in Italy or show proof of a negative test in the past 72 hours.

Italian Health Minister Roberto Speranza signed the ordinance on Thursday, the same day Italy’s new confirmed caseload passed 4,400, the highest levels since April.

Italy still has one of the lowest infection rates in Europe, at 52 cases per 100,000 residents over the last two weeks. By contrast, the Czech Republic counts 374 per 100,000, while Spain has 303, the Netherlands 285, France 257, Belgium 246, and the United Kingdom 201 per 100,000.

YANGON, Myanmar — Myanmar reported 1,012 new cases of the coronavirus a day after setting a record daily total of 1,400.

Authorities implemented a tight lockdown measures in Yangon, the country’s largest city with the highest number of infections.

Myanmar’s leader, State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, says the government had acquired antigen test kits to quickly detect positive cases. She acknowledged a shortage of beds in hospitals in some areas to treat patients but said the health ministry was arranging more facilities.

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