COVID cases drop, long-term care facilities see light at the end of the tunnel

Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 5:22 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - There is a light at the end of the tunnel for long-term care facilities.

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services reported a significant drop in new long-term care facilities COVID cases among residents.

Statewide there has been an 86 percent drop in COVID cases among long-term care residents. Health experts say the reason is because long-term care facilities were prioritized during the vaccine rollout.

“We are at a point in time where I think the vast majority long-term care facility residents have had at least one dose of the vaccine. And most have had two and the ones who haven’t will in a short period of time here,” said Ingham County Health Officer Linda Vail.

Long-term care facilities were at the top of the list to receive the first doses of the vaccine after frontline workers. That along with people following guidelines has also made a difference.

“It’s a matter of mitigation measures working. It’s a matter of cases declining in general. .So if they’re declining in the community, it’s less likely to bring them in through a visitor or through an employee. The vaccinations have started,” said Vail.

Holt Senior Care and Rehab Center said overall they have been fortunate throughout the pandemic.

“We have not had any positive COVID residents in our facility. Employee wise we had some isolated positive cases throughout the pandemic. I believe our first positive was in the summer,” said Ashley Benjamin, Director of Nursing at Holt Senior Care and Rehab Center.

So far, 90 percent of their residents at Holt have been vaccinated and the others are hoping to in the next month.

“They’re very excited to get it. They’re very excited to move forward with normalcy and to see their families again. That’s been a very difficult thing for all of us here,” said Benjamin.

Holt Senior Care and Rehab Center is hosting another vaccination clinic next month for staff and residents.

About 50 percent of the staff at the facility have received the vaccine or will be getting it next month.

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