Nursing homes and assisted living facilities have quickly become one of the biggest hot spots for the coronavirus in Kentucky — with nearly 80 now reporting cases.
The numbers of sick residents and staff are growing by the day, and state officials have dedicated much of their time to stemming new outbreaks.
There’s a lot to keep track of. But we’re here to help.
Below, find information on Kentucky’s nursing homes and how they’re responding to the pandemic.
Have a question we haven’t answered? Send it to reporter Bailey Loosemore at email@example.com.
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How many cases are in nursing homes?
As of May 6, state officials say 842 residents and 347 employees at long-term care facilities have tested positive for the coronavirus.
At least 160 people have died, including two staff members, according to the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services.
Nursing home residents and staff account for about 20% of Kentucky’s total coronavirus cases and 57% of its deaths.
Nearly 23,000 people live within licensed nursing homes in Kentucky, according to the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, a federal agency that regulates the industry.
More: Why a family won’t blame nursing home with COVID-19 outbreak for loved one’s diagnosis
Which nursing homes have cases?
Seventy-eight of Kentucky’s 285 licensed nursing homes have reported at least one case of the coronavirus among their residents and/or staff.
Homes with the most reported cases include:
- Morgantown, Butler County — 127 cases, 8 deaths
- Mills Health and Rehab, Graves County — 96 cases, 16 deaths
- Rivers Edge, Jefferson County — 93 cases, 7 deaths
- Rosedale Green, Kenton County — 85 cases, 20 deaths
- Signature Healthcare at Summit Manor, Adair County — 82 cases, 11 deaths
- Ridgewood Terrace, Hopkins County — 82 cases, 19 deaths
Search the database below to find information on specific facilities, or view a full list here.
What happens when a nursing home has an outbreak?
Responses at nursing homes have varied based on how large the facilities are, how many people are sick and what resources are available to control the spread of the virus.
But at every affected nursing home, sick residents are isolated from healthy ones by either moving to a COVID-only wing or being transferred to a hospital, based on the level of care they need and the facility’s capabilities for providing it.
Employees who test positive are asked to self-isolate until they stop showing symptoms and test negative for the virus.
And Kentucky’s Office of Inspector General is conducting infection control inspections at each facility that reports a case.
Several nursing homes with reported cases are working with health officials to test every resident and employee connected to their facility, though they are not required to do so.
The numbers: Nearly 80 Kentucky nursing homes have reported coronavirus cases. See the full list
How is Kentucky responding?
State officials have formed a long-term care task force that is helping nursing homes navigate the coronavirus pandemic by providing virtual guidance and sending “strike teams” to hard-hit facilities.
The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services is working with Norton Healthcare in Louisville, along with other health care providers statewide, to assist affected nursing homes and to create new protocols for transferring and isolating patients.
Norton has launched a 24-hour hotline that facilities can call with questions, and it’s setting up nursing homes with teams that can help them produce and implement plans for their facilities.
When will visiting restrictions be lifted?
Nursing homes across Kentucky have restricted visitors since early March, causing frustrations for people who can’t see their loved ones.
The restrictions aren’t expected to be lifted any time soon. Both Gov. Andy Beshear and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said nursing homes will likely be among the last places to reopen, and even then, visiting might not be the same as before the pandemic.
“We have to be ready for the long haul going forward with our facilities,” Fischer said during in early April. “… They’re not going to be as freely accessible as it was before.
“We have to safeguard them as much as possible.”
Background: More than half of Kentucky’s coronavirus-related deaths are from nursing homes
Reach reporter Bailey Loosemore at firstname.lastname@example.org, 502-582-4646 or on Twitter @bloosemore. Support strong local journalism by subscribing today: https://www.courier-journal.com/baileyl.
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