Only one Greenwood nursing home still has an active outbreak of COVID-19, but its number of infections continues to slow considerably.
In the past week, Golden Age nursing home has had one employee and one resident test positive for the respiratory disease, according to data released Friday by the Mississippi State Department of Health. The Greenwood nursing home has experienced no additional deaths.
Nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are particularly vulnerable to the new coronavirus, since their residents are older or in poor health. Residents of these facilities account for 33 of Leflore County’s 48 COVID-19 deaths, or 69%, and about half of Mississippi’s 1,022 deaths.
Since the outbreak first began at Golden Age, 14 of its residents have died from the virus. Eighty-nine have tested positive as well as 37 employees. It was not immediately known how many of these residents and employees have since recovered.
As of Thursday, there were 68 long-term facilities, including 50 nursing homes, in Mississippi with active outbreaks, according to the self-reporting data provided to the Health Department. That’s a decline from 71 infected facilities the week before.
There was no explanation, though, as to why a separate count by the Health Department showed 87 current outbreaks.
Riverview Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, which had a small outbreak, came off the list this week. The week before, Greenwood’s only other nursing home, Crystal Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center, reported it was clear of the virus after experiencing one of the worst outbreaks in the state.
On Friday, the Health Department reported 550 new cases of COVID-19 and six new deaths. The state’s total cases now exceed 25,000.
State health officials this past week expressed concerns about an increasing rate of hospitalization.
As of Friday morning, Greenwood Leflore Hospital’s COVID-19 unit was treating eight patients suffering from the virus, according to Christine Hemphill, a hospital spokeswoman. Three were on ventilators to help them breathe.