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RALEIGH – As COVID-19 cases increased this summer fueled by the Delta variant, hospitalizations and deaths among residents of North Carolina long-term care facilities were significantly lower than in the winter wave, as This is shown by data from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.
The decrease in cases and serious illnesses can be attributed to the vaccination of residents and staff of long-term care facilities and to the work carried out by long-term care providers to implement protective measures for staff and staff. residents against COVID-19.
As COVID-19 outbreaks reported in long-term care facilities increased from July to September 2021, average weekly cases decreased 89%, hospitalizations decreased 93%, and deaths decreased 95% compared to November and December 2020, when most residents of long-term care homes were not vaccinated. As of last week, more than 80% of residents in long-term care facilities have been fully immunized.
Additional epidemic data further demonstrates the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines. Currently, outbreaks in long-term care facilities are smaller in size and have fewer associated deaths compared to any other time during the pandemic. In addition, a comparison of these same periods shows that the duration of epidemics in long-term care facilities has decreased. A summary of the number of cases and long-term care facilities currently in an outbreak can be found in the Weekly Outbreak and Cluster Report.
“This data from our long-term care facilities is further proof that vaccines save lives,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, MD “Don’t wait until it’s too late. get vaccinated to protect yourself from COVID-19 and help your friends and family do the same. “
Since the onset of the pandemic, NCDHHS ‘COVID-19 response has included a comprehensive strategy for long-term care facilities, including prevention, staffing, testing, outbreak management, vaccination and surveillance. The state has established 10 regional infection prevention teams to support local health facilities and services. These teams have conducted on-site infection prevention and control assessments and training in more than 1,600 long-term care facilities.
In addition, the state provided personal protective equipment, helped fill staff shortages, provided infection prevention and control training, targeted funding, mandatory testing, facilitated vaccine administration and conducted infection control inspections at more than 400 nursing homes in North Carolina.
COVID-19 vaccines offer significant protection against serious illness, hospitalization and death. People who are not fully vaccinated are 20 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than people who are fully vaccinated.
Free COVID-19 vaccines are widely available statewide for anyone 12 years of age and older. To get a vaccine near you, visit MySpot.nc.gov or call 888-675-4567. You can also text your postal code to 438829 to find vaccine locations near you.