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Health officials announce 7 new outbreaks, including 6 in long-term care facilities – WMUR Manchester

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Dec 4, 2020

State officials announced 7 new COVID-19 outbreaks in New Hampshire, including 6 long-term care facilities. >> Download the FREE WMUR appAs the COVID-19 surge continues, there are now 6 new outbreaks at New Hampshire nursing homes. “The goal is to minimize the risk introduction, but there is nothing that is 100 perfect, especially when it spreads so easily,” state epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan said. Health officials said in the past two days, there have been 16 deaths in long-term care facilities. Those who advocate on behalf of care facilities said personal protective equipment and testing is not a problem now, but staffing is.“There’s a big shortage right now of licensed caregivers throughout the state of New Hampshire,” said Brendan Williams, of the New Hampshire Healthcare Association. “So, if you’re a rural facility in particular and you suffer an outbreak and your staff go out on quarantine, you’re finding it very, very difficult to cover those shifts.”The Health Care Association feels the state needs to assemble a surge team as New Hampshire waits for a vaccine.“I think that we’re hoping soon we’ll start seeing some vaccinations occurring in facilities I’m looking forward to the day when the safest place to be for an elderly person can be is a nursing home in New Hampshire,” Williams said. Health officials said a vaccine could be in the state in the next couple of weeks. “I don’t think that day is too far off, we’ve already discussed with the state rolling out the vaccination program for nursing home staff and for nursing home residents,” Williams said.

State officials announced 7 new COVID-19 outbreaks in New Hampshire, including 6 long-term care facilities.

>> Download the FREE WMUR app

As the COVID-19 surge continues, there are now 6 new outbreaks at New Hampshire nursing homes.

“The goal is to minimize the risk introduction, but there is nothing that is 100 perfect, especially when it spreads so easily,” state epidemiologist Dr. Benjamin Chan said.

Health officials said in the past two days, there have been 16 deaths in long-term care facilities. Those who advocate on behalf of care facilities said personal protective equipment and testing is not a problem now, but staffing is.

“There’s a big shortage right now of licensed caregivers throughout the state of New Hampshire,” said Brendan Williams, of the New Hampshire Healthcare Association. “So, if you’re a rural facility in particular and you suffer an outbreak and your staff go out on quarantine, you’re finding it very, very difficult to cover those shifts.”

The Health Care Association feels the state needs to assemble a surge team as New Hampshire waits for a vaccine.

“I think that we’re hoping soon we’ll start seeing some vaccinations occurring in facilities I’m looking forward to the day when the safest place to be for an elderly person can be is a nursing home in New Hampshire,” Williams said.

Health officials said a vaccine could be in the state in the next couple of weeks.

“I don’t think that day is too far off, we’ve already discussed with the state rolling out the vaccination program for nursing home staff and for nursing home residents,” Williams said.

 

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