At least 2,489 care homes across the United States have confirmed cases of coronavirus, a bombshell NBC report has revealed.
The shocking number is a 522% increase from a federal ‘estimate’ released just 10 days ago – meaning that there has either been a recent explosion in cases or a drastic underestimation by the US government.
The NBC report, which was released Friday, confirmed that the federal government is not keeping an exact track of which nursing homes have been infected, nor the total number of nursing home deaths.
A majority of states were unwilling or unable to disclose how many deaths had occurred in their nursing homes.
The lack of cohesive data has prompted outcry from experts, given that elderly people much more likely to be impacted by COVID-19, and mass deaths can occur at care homes if the virus infiltrates the facilities.
‘It’s impossible to fight and contain this virus if we don’t know where it’s located. You could see where it could be headed next,’ David Grabowski, a professor of health care policy at Harvard Medical School, told NBC.
The shocking report about the lack of federal government data follows separate revelations out of New York, where paramedics have revealed they have not been testing people for coronavirus if they die at home or on the street.
It suggests that the soaring death toll from the virus could be much higher than currently reported.
At least 2,489 care homes across the United States have confirmed cases of coronavirus, a bombshell NBC report has revealed. An ambulance crew is pictured transporting a care home patient out of the Gateway Care and Rehabilitation Center in California, where 65 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed
Paramedics take a suspected coronavirus Covid-19 patient from the Fort Washington Senior Rehabilitation Center in New York
NBC found that 2,489 care homes have confirmed cases of COVID-19 after they were able to obtain data from 36 different state agencies.
However, the actual number of nursing homes dealing with coronavirus patients is likely to be much higher, given that 14 states were unable or unwilling to disclose their figures.
States that did not reveal their data include Florida, Michigan and Ohio – which have all been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.
Of the 36 states that did unveil their figures, New York was the most affected.
452 nursing homes across that state have recorded patients with COVID-19.
Meanwhile, Illinois rank second with 213 separate nursing homes battling coronavirus, while Texas came in third with 195 affected care homes.
Numbers were far lower in more rural states. Wyoming and Montana only have one infected nursing home each.
NBC found that 2,489 care homes have confirmed cases of COVID-19 after they were able to obtain data from 36 different state agencies. The Life Care Center of Kirkland in Washington state is one of the homes. A resident is pictured in the facility back in February
A patient is pictured being evacuated from the Magnolia Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in Riverside, California
UNDER REPORTING OF DEATHS AND A LACK OF CLEAR DATA
The fact that the federal government is not keeping a record of the total number of nursing home deaths has sparked outrage, but there are other examples where data is not being cohesively obtained by authorities.
A disturbing new report out of New York asserts that bodies being recovered from homes and streets are not being included in the coronavirus death count – even if the deceased person was suffering from symptoms of the virus.
Data from the NYC fire department shows that 1,125 people died in their homes or on the street in the first five days of April alone
It suggests that the soaring death toll from the virus could be much higher than currently reported
This has alarmed researchers who say that obtaining accurate data is crucial in order to gain an proper understanding of COVID-19, which is needed to help fight the virus in the coming months.
While 36 states provided NBC with the number of nursing homes with cases of COVID-19, only 24 released data on patient deaths.
Those 24 states have a combined total of 2,246 care home patient deaths, with more than half occurring in New York state.
However, California – which has a whopping 191 care homes infected with COVID-19 – failed to reveal their total number of deaths.
Many nursing homes across the country ramped up their health and safety measures after an outbreak at Washington state’s Life Care Center of Kirkland back in February.
The nursing home was the original epicenter of the COVID-19 virus in the US after dozens of residents became infected back in mid-February.
A total of 37 people connected to the Life Care Center of Kirkland have died from COVID-19 in the past two months.
‘For better or worse, we got to sound the alarm for other nursing homes across the state and across the country,’ nursing home spokesperson Tim Killian recently stated. .
In early April, the Life Care Center of Kirkland was fine $611,325 for ‘inadequate care’.
Meanwhile, the number of coronavirus cases throughout the US continues to skyrocket. As of Friday evening, nearly 500,000 Americans have tested positive to the contagious virus.
NBC found that 2,489 care homes have confirmed cases of COVID-19 after they were able to obtain data from 36 different state agencies
Many nursing homes across the country ramped up their health and safety measures near after an outbreak at Washington state’s Life Care Center of Kirkland back in February. The facility is pictured being cleaned on March 11