Wyoming Leads Nation In Nursing Home COVID Cases

in News/Coronavirus

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Wyoming has the highest rate of COVID cases among nursing home residents in the nation, according to data released by the AARP this week.

There were 150 laboratory-confirmed cases among nursing home residents in Wyoming during the four-week period ending on Oct. 17, AARP reported, a rate of 8.5 per 100 residents. Montana had the second-highest rate almost 7 per 100 residents.

Nearly 35% of the nursing homes in the state had seen COVID cases among residents during that four-week period, while 84.4% of the nursing homes saw COVID cases among staff.

Despite the high number of cases, almost 90% of Wyoming’s nursing home residents are vaccinated, while 60.7% of health care staff are vaccinated, according to AARP.

“It is encouraging to see a large increase in the number of nursing home staff who are vaccinated. However, nearly half a million direct care staff remain unvaccinated as of mid-October,” said Nancy A. LeaMond, AARP Executive Vice President and Chief Advocacy & Engagement Officer. “More than a year and a half into the pandemic, COVID-19 continues to spread in nursing homes. We must ensure that all residents and staff are vaccinated to bring the pandemic under control.” AARP has called on nursing facilities to require vaccination.

There were 27 nursing home deaths in the state over that four-week period, giving Wyoming the second-highest rate of nursing home resident deaths in the nation, coming in behind Montana.

Washington, D.C. and Hawaii had the lowest death rates in the nation, zero per 100 residents.

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