COVID-19 Rages Across Indiana Nursing Homes

Posted in: Uncategorized | Apr 18,2020

State nursing homes have COVID-19 infection rates of as high as 61%A combination of advanced resident years, group living and low staffing is being blamed for a high number of COVID-19 deaths across Indiana nursing homes.

At the time of writing this, more than 120 seniors at Indiana’s nursing home facilities had died from COVID-19.  The number of fatalities at nursing homes spiked by a staggering 260 percent over the course of a week. Not only that, but seniors at nursing homes accounted for 27 percent of Indiana’s total COVID-19 positive toll.  The COVID-19 death toll in Indiana is currently 477. Out of those numbers, as many as 88 percent are seniors above the age of 60.

Cities across the United States have seen higher numbers of COVID-19 – related deaths occur at the nation’s nursing homes. At last count, more than 6,500 coronavirus deaths had occurred at nursing homes.

There are several reasons for this high toll.

Seniors have lower immunity, and may be at a much higher risk of contracting the infection. Across the globe, it’s been the immunocompromised who have borne the brunt of the pandemic, and the scene has been no different in Indiana. Besides, seniors are not just more likely to contract the infection, but also much more likely to die as a result of the infection.

The COVID-19 death toll in Indiana is currently 477. Out of those, as many as 88 percent are seniors above the age of 60.

Seniors are also much more likely to suffer from preexisting medical conditions like cardiovascular disease and lung problems that make them more susceptible to death from the coronavirus infection.

Besides, nursing homes are based on group living that allow intermingling and as a result, have a greater chance of contracting the infection.

Indiana nursing homes also have for long suffered a staffing shortage problem. When facilities housing immunocompromised seniors living in close proximity to each other also face the problem of low staff numbers, they may be unable to function in a healthy manner. It’s more difficult for staff to maintain social distancing protocols between residents when there are too few staff members to supervise residents. Many staff may be poorly paid which makes it more likely that they will come in to work even if they are sick. Few staff members means more stressed staff who may be more likely to violate hand sanitation protocols.

All these factors combine to place seniors at a high risk of death from COVID-19 in Indiana’s nursing homes.