Relatives and advocates are calling for federal authorities to relax restrictions in long-term care institutions and grant special status to “essential caregivers” — family members or friends who provide critically important hands-on care — so they have the opportunity to tend to relatives in need.
The debate begins with the covid death tallies. But the issues go beyond basic numbers.
It’s becoming increasingly clear that decision-making about the covid vaccine is complicated and multifaceted, which means persuading people to say yes will be, too.
Amid the disorganization and confusion of the vaccine distribution, smaller communities may have an advantage. In some long-term care facilities where vaccination is underway, things are looking up.
Older patients with cancer, dementia or other serious illnesses should check with their doctors, but medical experts recommend the vaccine for most people.
A federal program that sends retail pharmacists into nursing homes to vaccinate residents and workers has been hindered by bureaucratic hurdles and scheduling woes.
The National Academy of Sciences cites journalists’ “Lost on the Frontline” project in a push to expand federal tracking of worker fatalities.
At least 2,900 health workers have died since the pandemic began. Many were minorities with the highest levels of patient contact.
After missteps in Washington, each state and county is left to juggle where to send vaccines first and how to get them to each nursing home, hospital local health department and even school.
As the coronavirus surges around the country, workers in nursing homes and assisted living centers are watching cases rise in long-term care facilities with a sense of dread. Many of these workers struggle with grief over the suffering they’ve witnessed.