For the Covid-19 patients who are discharged to long term care facilities the question is where can they go? The same holds true for patients who do not wish to return to the facility where they contracted the virus.
In Arizona, a limited number of long-term care facilities are accepting new Covid-19 positive patients. In Arizona, it is the facility’s choice. New York attempted to mandate that long-term care facilities take residents regardless of Covid-19 status and got significant pushback. The mandate was thus lifted and it is now the facility’s choice.
CMS guidelines urge states to designate positive facilities.
The guidelines emphasize the importance of keeping positive residents separated and therefore suggest designating certain facilities to handle all Covid-19 residents may be the best route. The guidelines also suggest the local efforts should be made to ensure those designated facilities have adequate PPE.
Interestingly, national long-term care organizations recommended facilities prepare for an influx of positive patients back in March. Their guidance suggests all facilities should assume it would receive incoming positive patients via hospital discharge and should set up isolation measures preemptively.
COVID-19 Governance and official guidance
These issues are handled at the local State level and the guidance varies. However all guidance emphasizes the importance of taking appropriate precaution to prevent the spread in long-term care facilities. This guidance has been in place since the early stages of the pandemic.
Thus, facilities that did not act accordingly and thereby caused injury or death to its residents may be liable.
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