High COVID-19 transmission in communities also increases risk in nursing homes


(WAVY) — Coronavirus cases are surging across the nation — including in the commonwealth,
where the Virginia Department of Health reports thousands of people are testing positive for the virus every day.

COVID-19 transmission is high right now — and it doesn’t only impact people who are going out in public.

High transmission in communities also causes an increase of transmission and the potential of outbreaks at nursing home facilities, according to VDH’s Laurie Forlano.

“The recent surge in cases community-wide is absolutely impacting long term care facilities in Virginia, as it is across the country,” Forlano said.

“When transmission is higher the number of outbreaks will begin to increase,” Forlano said.

Forlano works on VDH’s long-term care task force. She said that VDH is monitoring COVID-19 surges, and are on alert for increased outbreaks in long-term care facilities.

Risks are high right now — but Forlano says that nursing facilities have learned many lessons since the pandemic began, and the number of people impacted by each nursing home outbreak is, on average, smaller than it was in April.

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