New NACo report highlights impact of COVID-19 on nursing homes, counties' response to key challenges

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NACo releases new report outlining COVID-19 impact on nursing homes & landscape of federal resources for county long-term care providers Across the country, counties own and operate 758 long-term care facilities

On June 22, NACo released a new issue brief, Nursing Homes and COVID-19, that highlights key challenges and the landscape of federal resources for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) and nursing homes to address the coronavirus pandemic. Across the country, counties own and operate 758 long-term care facilities;  approximately 30 percent of county nursing homes are not-for-profit and could require significant funding to successfully contain the virus.

COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on long-term care environments, which primarily serve older adults and individuals with underlying chronic conditions; both groups are shown to be more susceptible to complications stemming from the coronavirus. According to data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), as of March 2020, 127 of the nation’s 15,000 nursing homes had at least one resident who tested positive for COVID-19.

NACo’s report outlines the scope of the pandemic in long-term care facilities, as well as recent federal guidance and legislative proposals that aim to help nursing homes and SNFs navigate the crisis and curb community spread of the virus. The report additionally contains new data on COVID-19 cases in nursing homes and county best practices to address the pandemic.

The release of NACo’s report comes as congressional legislators in both chambers begin hearings to assess the full impact of COVID-19 on nursing homes and consider what federal resources are needed to stem the crisis As these efforts ramp up, on June 30, NACo will host a webinar for county officials and Capitol Hill staff on how federal efforts and technology are helping mitigate spread of the virus in nursing homes, with recommendations on what counties need to better respond to the pandemic. 

For additional resources on counties and long-term care, please see the following links: 

About Valerie Brankovic (Full Bio)

Legislative Associate

Valerie joined NACo in 2017 and serves as a Legislative Associate, staffing NACo's Veterans and Military Services Committee and supporting the Health and Community, Economic and Workforce Development Steering Committees and the Large Urban County Caucus (LUCC).

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