Protecting Assisted Living Facilities from COVID-19
Assisted living facilities have felt the brunt of the novel coronavirus that continues to wreak havoc throughout the United States and world. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 45 percent of COVID-19 deaths so far took place in assisted living communities and other long-term care facilities. Tragically, these vulnerable populations have felt the repercussions of the virus more than any other group. Furthermore, many experts predict the number of deaths from assisted living facilities is even higher than what’s been reported.
As we discussed last week, assisted living operators are not only struggling to stay afloat but faced with an uphill battle when it comes to protecting staff and residents. Internal costs have spiked and providers are being forced to pivot and look for innovative ways to stay in business while the virus remains a threat. The knowledgeable team at Sherman and Roylance Real Estate Investment Services understands how difficult times are right now for assisted living operators in California and the rest of the country. To learn more about the current state of the senior housing market, or if you are looking to acquire a facility, please give us a call. We have extensive national connections and are here to assist however we can.
Why Are Assisted Living Facilities So Vulnerable?
The longer the virus sticks around, the more we are learning about how it spreads and affects specific populations. Researchers have been working tirelessly to understand why assisted living facilities have been hit so hard. Here’s what they’ve discovered:
Assisted living residents and staff work and live in close quarters, increasing the chances of infectious diseases spreading
COVD-19 is an incredibly contagious virus, creating an additional layer of danger
Early on, lack of testing created a dangerous situation
Asymptomatic spread is very common and difficult to control
Many residents already have a weakened immune system and are susceptible to diseases and other health problems
How to Protect Assisted Living Communities
COVID-19 has affected virtually every single industry in the United States, especially assisted living. Over the last several months, these facilities and their operators have been working closely with local community, state, and federal leaders to take additional steps to protect residents and staff from the virus. And while funding for these facilities remains a touchy subject (the majority of assisted living facilities in California are private, making them ineligible for federal aid), operators have taken matters into their own hands. Here are some of the ways assisted living facilities are protecting residents from COVID-19:
Widespread group testing
Utilizing telehealth and remote health monitoring practices
Opportunities for staff to live on-site in an effort to reduce outside exposure
Increased supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Hero pay for essential workers
To learn more about how COVID-19 is impacting assisted living facilities and the steps providers are taking to protect these communities, please do not hesitate to contact Sherman and Roylance Real Estate Investment Services.