NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Governor Lamont’s latest executive order lays out some changes for Connecticut’s senior care centers. The state is now collaborating with senior care facilities to plan for the surge in COVID-19 patients.
We know seniors are much more likely to be affected by the coronavirus. Bella Vista has at least three positive cases, last we heard. So it only makes sense that the places where seniors live start planning for what happens now, at the peak of this crisis, and after.
At Bella Vista, they have already taken steps. The three residents who tested positive are now in the hospital. Common spaces are now closed and meals are being delivered to people’s rooms.
Governor Lamont’s latest executive order lays out a four-point plan for nursing homes in the state and plans for opening up additional facilities just for the treatment and housing of COVID-19 positive seniors.
The first step, when patients leave the hospital recovered from their coronavirus symptoms, there first has to be testing to see if they still have it or not. Step two is to dedicate specific units within nursing homes just for people who test positive. Step three is to convert some nursing homes into places just for patients with coronavirus, so you will have coronavirus nursing homes and coronavirus-free nursing homes. That may require building entirely new facilities, which is step four.
At Bella Vista, they have already taken major steps to stop the spread of the virus, and New Haven’s Mayor likes what he sees.
“Fair Haven Health has been a great team member there, they’ve actually been able to conduct tests in residents’ rooms if they are symptomatic. So we’re very grateful to have them on-site as a trusted partner to keep people in Bella Vista safe.”
It is clear that the virus is spreading through the elderly population. The Governor put out a list of about three dozen nursing homes in which residents have tested positive. They stretch from Greenwich to New London, Stafford Springs to Torrington. So nursing homes are already being forced to take steps.
Meanwhile, doctors remind everyone that is it not just the elderly who need to worry about the virus.
“In the first month or two of the spread of the pandemic to the US, there have been a lot of younger healthy adults and children who are getting very sick,” Dr. Steven Choi, Yale School of Medicine.
That includes very young children. A 7-week-old baby in Hartford died and tested positive for coronavirus, although it’s not clear if the virus is what killed that child.