Sunday, June 28, 2020

43% of US COVID-19 deaths were nursing home residents.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director, Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

On June 25 I published the article - 81% of Canada's COVID-19 deaths were long-term care residents. I based my article on the June 25 report by Globe and Mail Health Reporter Kelly Grant, who wrote about the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) report: Pandemic Experience in Long-Term Care Sector.

A few days before I republished the article by Michael Cook concerning the abuse of palliative drug cocktails in Sweden, that led to higher percentages of COVID-19 deaths and at least 50% of the deaths being residents of nursing homes. 

In my article: Stealth euthanasia: How many Canadian Seniors with COVID-19 were killed? I suggest that the same abuse happened in Sweden and Canada.

Today I am writing a commentary on the article in the New York Times published on June 27 titled: 43% of US Coronavirus deaths are linked to nursing homes.

The data in the New York Times article is based on deaths up to June 26. The data in the article - 81% of Canadian COVID-19 deaths were linked to long-term care residents is based on deaths up to May 25. The percentage of Canadian long-term care resident deaths likely decreased between May 25 and June 26 as Canada's provincial governments began to focus on lowering the infection and death rates in nursing homes.

The New York Times article states that 43% of the Coronavirus deaths were linked to nursing homes while 11% of the known cases were nursing home residents. According to the article:

At least 54,000 residents and workers have died from the coronavirus at nursing homes and other long-term care facilities for older adults in the United States, according to a New York Times database. As of June 26, the virus has infected more than 282,000 people at some 12,000 facilities. 
While 11 percent of the country’s cases have occurred in long-term care facilities, deaths related to Covid-19 in these facilities account for more than 43 percent of the country’s pandemic fatalities. 
The share of deaths linked to long-term care facilities for older adults is even starker at the state level. In 24 states, the number of residents and workers who have died accounts for either half or more than half of all deaths from the virus.
This chart concerning percentage of deaths is from the New Times article.

Cases and deaths in long-term care facilities, by state

United States12,000282,00054,00043%
New Hampshire261,96729380%
Rhode Island642,74571577%
North Dakota655695664%

The New York Times conducted its own research:
In the absence of comprehensive data from some states and the federal government, The Times has been assembling its own database of coronavirus cases and deaths at long-term care facilities for older adults. These include nursing homes, assisted-living facilities, memory care facilities, retirement and senior communities and rehabilitation facilities.
The Canadian research was done by a government supported agency that had access to all of the data enabling them to determine if a death was related to a long-term care facility.

The data in the New York Times article is devastating and indicates that it is necessary to conduct a full inquiry into nursing homes which should lead to possible elder abuse and homicide charges.We need to rethink nursing homes and support community based care.

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