Nursing Homes and Coronavirus
The Orlando Sentinel recently reported that Florida nursing homes are ramping up coronavirus precautions. Between the outbreak of coronavirus infection and the at least four deaths that occurred in a nursing home near Seattle, nursing homes in the Sunshine State are on high alert as they care for one of the most vulnerable populations. Just hours after Florida officials confirmed the first two cases of COVID-19 in the state in early March, both Gov. Ron DeSantis and AARP Florida made public pleas for elder-care facilities to undertake heightened measures to protect the 160,000 Floridians who live in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
What Should Be Understood About Older People and Coronavirus?
Considering that Florida is home to more than 5.5 million elders and boasts the highest population percentage of those 65 and older in the nation, it is important for residents to understand that coronavirus doesn’t infect all patients equally. The results of a recent study of more than 44,000 coronavirus patients indicates that a person’s chances of dying from the disease increase with age. For example, patients in their 50s were about three times more likely to die than patients in their 40s. However, the risk of dying is dramatically higher among patients in their 70s and 80s, likely because many of those people have preexisting health issues. The statistics suggest that patients older than 80 have a 15 percent chance of dying.
At the time that this article was written, coronavirus has killed more than 2,800 people and infected more than 82,000 people in almost 70 countries around the world. That means that this virus has already reached over seven times the number of countries and infected almost three times the number of people of the second-most widespread virus in recent decades, Ebola.
How Can You Help Your Loved Ones?
Seeing information regarding the recent spread of coronavirus can leave loved ones wondering what, if anything, they can do to help those nursing home residents they care about. The best way to prevent this illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus in the first place. Between the close quarters present in nursing homes and the fact that you aren’t present at every moment, the reality is that you can’t prevent the spread of a virus any more than you could prevent your loved one from catching a common cold. However, what you can do is undertake safety measures such as:
- Don’t visit if you are sick.
- Pay heightened attention to your loved one’s hygiene as practicing good hygiene is the best way people can protect themselves from coronavirus.
- Encourage the nursing home to follow infection control guidelines and recommendations issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Has the Nursing Home You Entrusted Failed to Provide Proper Care?
If you or a loved one has suffered abuse and neglect at the hands of a nursing home, you may be entitled to compensation. As the Orlando personal injury attorneys at The Pendas Law Firm, we can help you protect the rights of yourself or your loved one if he or she has been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect. Contact us today.
The Pendas Law Firm also represents clients in the Jacksonville, Tampa, Ocala, Bradenton, Fort Myers, West Palm Beach, Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Daytona Beach areas.