long term care

Three quarters of Ohio’s confirmed COVID-19 deaths are from its nursing homes. Nationwide, more than 40% of coronavirus deaths are linked to long term care facilities. The nation’s nursing homes lobbying group has written to Ohio’s Mike DeWine and other governors, warning that without action now there will be more outbreaks, especially if visitors are allowed back in to see loved ones after months away.

Nearly three quarters of all confirmed COVID-19 deaths in Ohio have been in nursing homes. Ohio National Guard personnel have been helping with testing in long term care facilities, but the funding for them to continue that and other pandemic related missions runs out in a month.

Gov. Mike DeWine at his daily coronavirus press conference on Sunday, March 23, 2020.
Office of Gov. Mike DeWine

Gov. Mike DeWine announced that Ohio's nursing homes will be allowed to have outdoor visitors again, beginning July 20. It will be the first time in four months that many long-term care residents will be able to see family members in person.

Elderly person in a nursing home.
Sabine van Erp / Pixabay

As Gov. Mike DeWine loosens visitation rules at nursing homes and assisted living facilities, where the coronavirus pandemic has hit hardest, mental health professionals are counseling residents to help ease their stress.

Some of Ohio's long-term care facilities began outdoor visitation Monday.

After nearly three months, residents in assisted living facilities and intermediate care facilities for individuals with developmental disabilities can now visit with their family members outdoors.

“This is such a sweet day, in my mind,” said Nancy Sutula, Vice President of Residential Services at Menorah Park in Beachwood. “Residents are finally being able to physically see their family members and spend some quality time with them.”

Coronavirus In Ohio: Families Weigh Risks Of Sending Loved Ones To Nursing Homes

May 29, 2020
A sign at the Mill Run nursing home in Hilliard.
Ryan Hitchcock / WOSU

In early March, just as Ohioans were learning about the first cases of novel coronavirus in the state, Anna Bondar’s grandfather fell at his Cleveland home. Luckily, the 92-year old, who lives with dementia, wasn’t injured badly.

The tight-knit family started to discuss the possibility of a nursing home, though they had serious reservations.

Gov. Mike DeWine is beginning to loosen restrictions on assisted living facilities and homes for the developmentally disabled.

Starting June 8, residents at those two types of long-term care facilities can meet with visitors outdoors, the governor announced Thursday.

Rebecca Roth reviews applications for election ballots at the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections, Wednesday, April 22, 2020, in Cleveland.
Tony Dejak / Associated Press

In this week's episode of Snollygoster, Ohio's politics podcast from WOSU, hosts Mike Thompson and Steve Brown discuss President Trump's inaccurate claim that mail-in ballots are ripe for fraud. Michael McDonald, a political science professor at the University of Florida, joins the show.

The Ohio National Guard will deploy across the state beginning this week to help expand COVID-19 testing at Ohio’s 960 nursing homes. Gov. Mike DeWine announced the effort during his regular coronavirus briefing.

More than three quarters of confirmed COVID-19 deaths in Ohio have come from nursing homes. This week’s total is a 30% increase from a week ago.

Attorney General Dave Yost speaks at a press conference in 2018.
Karen Kasler / Statehouse News Bureau

The Ohio Attorney General’s office has executed a search warrant at the retirement home Bickford of Worthington.

A sign at the Mill Run nursing home in Hilliard.
Ryan Hitchcock / WOSU

The state has now added deaths from COVID-19 in nursing homes to its coronavirus tracking website,  confirming that nearly 300 people have died of the disease in those facilities.

Mill Run Rehabilitation Center and Assisted Living in Hilliard has seen several residents and staff test positive for COVID-19.
Ryan Hitchcock / WOSU

Mass testing in three Ohio prisons has turned up 3,853 coronavirus cases among inmates and 379 prison workers, showing how fast the virus can spread in congregate settings. Now the state’s long-term care providers are hoping for the same thing in over 1,000 nursing homes, assisted living communities and other facilities.

The people most vulnerable to the coronavirus are older adults with underlying health conditions. And that perfectly describes the residents of nursing homes.

A sign at the Mill Run nursing home in Hilliard.
Ryan Hitchcock / WOSU

Ohio's nursing home lobby supports Gov. Mike DeWine's decision to shield some information regarding COVID-19 cases in long-term care facilities, including death rates.

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