On Wednesday, the Illinois Department of Public Health reported 192 COVID-19-linked deaths for the prior day, a record total for the state since the beginning of the outbreak. The next day, the number dropped to 138, but the state remains on track for a shocking spike in deaths as reopenings continue and many southern states see much more promising results.
As we noted earlier this week, ~50% of deaths in Illinois have involved residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, problems that Spain and the UK have also struggled with. And the spike in deaths in the state seen this week has largely been attributed to a surge in managed-care-home deaths as the state’s utter failure to protect those patients becomes more shockingly apparent.
Nursing home deaths clearly constitute an outsize chunk of the state’s fatalities: the percentage has jumped from 48%, from just 35% last month.
As Breitbart News reported earlier this week, governors in at least three states – NY, NJ, PA – all adopted policies requiring nursing homes to accept patients who had tested positive for the virus. Gov Cuomo defended his decision, saying it was intended to ensure the patients wouldn’t be left ‘stranded’ at hospitals.
So, instead of hospitalizing the most vulnerable patients, Cuomo knowingly sent them back to nursing homes around New York state, where they infected dozens of staff and other residents. This has led to an explosion of nursing-home crises as the (mostly Democrat-controlled) states with the largest numbers of nursing home deaths wonder how they failed so badly at keeping the most vulnerable safe from the virus.
To be clear, Cuomo has essentially admitted that he sent COVID-19 positive patients back to nursing homes, and defended his decision to do so, all while blaming President Trump and the ‘failures’ of the federal government to provide tests for everyone who wants one – a ludicrous standard that hasn’t even been met in South Korea or China – or anywhere, really.
In Illinois, Gov Pritzker, didn’t issue any guidance, turning his back as some facilities allowed COVID-19 positive patients to return to the home, and others – probably the better-run facilities – were wise enough to insist that the patients be hospitalized, or tended to elsewhere.
Many of the Republican-controlled states that issued specific directives prohibiting COVID-19 positive patients from returning to nursing homes are now reopening, and experiencing mostly positive results. Yet, the ‘stay home, save lives’ crowd in NY, NJ and elsewhere probably don’t realize how badly at fault their own “champions” are for the massive death tolls in their states. As Breitbart calculated, in Illinois and most of these other states, the average age of dead COVID-19 patients was higher than the rest of the country, showing how more of the deaths came from nursing homes.