Nursing Home, Long Term Care Residents Most Susceptible To COVID-19

Most recent Frederick County death took place at Frederick Health & Rehabilitation.


Frederick, Md (KM) Nursing homes and long term care facilities have often been the place where many of nations’ coronavirus deaths have been occurring. Rissah Watkins, a public information officer for the Frederick County Joint Information Center, says these facilities have a large population of elderly residents, some of whom have underlying medical conditions.

“We are being told to practice social distancing. But that is really hard to do when you’re living with a large group of people. And most of these facilities have a lot of high risk individuals living close together. So that is why we are so concerned about them during this response,” says Watkins.

A man in his 80’s who was a resident at the Frederick Health and Rehabilitation Center is the second person in Frederick County who died from the coronavirus. The Joint Information Center says this man had an underlying medical problem.

Watkins says the Center has put policies in place to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 among its residents. “Visitation is restricted at all of these facilities, and that is based on guidance from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services,” she says.

Other practices put in place are  screening the staff during each shift, and screening medical personnel who come into these centers. These facilities also keep in contact with their suppliers, vendors and pharmacy providers.

Despite some of the dangers of contracting the coronavirus and other infectious diseases at nursing homes and long term care centers, Watkins was asked how confident should residents feel about their older family members living in these facilities. “They are all working very hard to take care of all of their residents,” she says. “Many of these facilities are sending out updates to their residents’ families so that their relatives can know what is going on. We know this is a scary time for everyone, and we do all have a role to play in keeping our community healthy.”

Watkins also reminds residents that it’s important for them to keep in touch with their family members  in nursing homes and long term care facilities. “Call them or Skye them, however possible,” she said “We know how hard it is for healthy adults  living at home right now, and having to stay inside. And it’s definitely hard for our residents in these facilities too.”


By Kevin McManus