Wall Street Journal (January 21)
The drugmaker plans to ask U.S. health regulators to expand bamlanivimab’s use to protect nursing-home residents and staff from Covid-19.
Assistant HHS Secretary Nominee Accused Of Not Helping To Protect Nursing Home Residents At The Beginning Of The Pandemic.
Inside Sources (1/20, Shepherd) reports that at the beginning “of the COVID-19 pandemic, Pennsylvania Department of Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine,” whom President Biden nominated for the position of Assistant HHS Secretary, “repeatedly assured the public that protecting nursing home residents was the commonwealth’s top priority. ‘This is our most vulnerable population, and so we’re doing everything we can’ to help those in long-term care facilities (LTCFs), she said on April 16.” However, “a trove of emails and other documents obtained by Delaware Valley Journal (an InsideSources affiliate) show that behind the scenes, advocates for the elderly were begging the Wolf administration for more help as the death rate kept climbing.” They especially “fought to separate COVID-positive residents from the rest of the LTCF population, comparing conditions to ‘a fire in dry grass.’”
New York State Legislators Want Biden To Convince Cuomo To Release Total Number Of COVID-19 Deaths In Nursing Homes.
The New York Post (1/20, Hogan) reports, “New York lawmakers are turning to President Joe Biden during his first day on the job, begging him to implore Gov. Andrew Cuomo to publicly release the total number of nursing home residents who died from the pandemic.” New York’s “Health Department has recorded roughly 8,400 confirmed and presumed COVID-19 deaths of individuals who passed away in long term care facilities since March, however, the agency has excluded data pertaining to deaths of residents who died of the virus after being transferred into hospitals.” Two state legislators, one a Republican and the other a Democrat, wrote “a letter to Biden late Tuesday, asking him to make revealing the missing data a priority.”
Nursing Home Job Numbers Continue To Decline.
Modern Healthcare (1/19, Christ, Subscription Publication) reports, “Even as overall healthcare employment has rebounded slightly, job numbers in nursing homes continue their downward spiral.” Pennsylvania Health Care Association CEO Zach Shamberg said, “Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a workforce crisis in long-term care.” Shamberg added, “Even though the vaccine is here, and even though it is being distributed, you have a lot of staff that could potentially leave after everything. ... Our biggest fear is what will happen when the dust settles. … There is the very real fear there could be a mass exodus from long-term care.”