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Arizona Governor Doug Ducey urged to add protections in senior care homes

Posted at 7:38 PM, Aug 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-05 23:08:33-04

PHOENIX — An organization that represents long-term-care facilities across the country is urging governors, including Arizona's, to act now to ensure the facilities have adequate personal protective equipment, staff support, and expedited tests.

The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living said Arizona is one of 33 states with a positive coronavirus test rate of over 5% as of late July.

All states above this threshold to soon follow new federal mandates to test all staff in all skilled nursing facilities weekly.

There are 146 such facilities in Arizona. AHCA/NCAL also listed the skilled nursing facilities with less than a one week supply of N95 masks (14%), surgical masks (8%) and gowns (11%).

The American Health Care Association's CEO is urging many Governors, including Doug Ducey, "to take immediate action to protect our seniors and health care heroes by ensuring long term facilities have adequate supplies of PPE (including N95 masks) and staff support as well as facilitating expedited test results for our residents and caregivers."

Ducey set up a task force last week to look at some of these issues, but it is not clear how soon they will make their recommendations.