COVID-19 cases, deaths surging in South Carolina nursing homes, AARP says

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – According to AARP’s most recent data, coronavirus cases and deaths are rising in South Carolina’s nursing homes.

In the four weeks leading up to Aug. 22, the agency reported finding that infection rates increased six-fold among nursing home residents and eight-fold among staff. Deaths increased nine-fold among residents within that timeframe, AARP reported.

To view AARP’s dashboard, click here.

The agency says that so far, COVID-19 has killed 1,796 nursing home staff and residents in South Carolina.

According to AARP’s report, the high rate of infection and death within nursing homes is linked to stalled vaccination rates, particularly among staff. The report found that 54.4 percent of South Carolina’s nursing home staff is fully vaccinated, nearly 10 points shy of the national average of 64 percent.

“This month’s dashboard underscores why all staff and residents in long-term care facilities must be vaccinated as quickly as possible,” Teresa Arnold, AARP State Director, said. “For unvaccinated nursing home residents, their risk of an infection has risen dramatically.”

In an effort to boost vaccination rates among staff, the Biden administration has announced it will mandate vaccines for all nursing home staff serving Medicare or Medicaid patients.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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