State data shows spike of COVID-19 cases in elderly facilities - FOX34 Lubbock

State data shows spike of COVID-19 cases in elderly facilities

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Although the case count for COVID-19 is still high, the Lubbock Health Department reported a gradual decline during Wednesday's news conference.

"Other indicators such as the number of phone calls and requests for clinic appointments has also declined," Director of Public Health, Katherine Wells said. "These are all good signs that the amount of virus circulating in the community is declining, and this is where we want to be heading into the school year."

One population still suffering the spread is nursing homes and assisted living communities.

According to the State's Health Agency, there has been more than 8,000 confirmed cases this month. That's four times more than in all of June.

"There's actually a contractor now that a nursing home or assisted living can request testing, even if they don't have a case, they can get their employees tested so we're very supportive of that," Wells said. "If we find cases within a facility, we're using that strike team from Lubbock Fire and Rescue and health departments to actually go in and test residents."

President Donald Trump said he is aware of the problem and announced his plans in Midland.

"To protect our seniors, my administration has deployed personal protective equipment and rapid point of care testing systems to every medicare and medicaid certified nursing home in your state, no matter where you go they have it," Trump said.

The city has reported 75 COVID-19 related deaths to date, and many of them were residents in nursing facilities.

"All of the deaths in Lubbock County have been people over the age of 50," Lubbock Mayor, Dan Pope said. "And three quarters of them have been over the age of 70, however that doesn't lessen the impacts of those lives."

According to the new data, nearly 50 employees in Lubbock area nursing homes and assisted living facilities currently have the virus. Therefore, more tests and PPE is necessary to protect the high risk community.

We have the updated COVID-19 case count in the FOX34 News app.


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