Saturday, April 25, 2020
Escape from an Elmhurst adult care center
As the coronavirus races through nursing homes and assisted living facilities across the country, many desperate family members are finding themselves like Roland, unable to learn the truth about what is happening inside.
In story after story, the owners of beleaguered facilities — because of greed, incompetence or fear — have kept the reality of circumstances murky or misleading.
Many state health departments nationwide are refusing to provide up-to-date, or in some cases any, facility-specific numbers on COVID-19 deaths or infections to the family members of residents, to journalists or even to local politicians.
And in New York, which has just begun releasing some information, state officials are relying on nursing homes to accurately report deaths and infections.
As a result, family members and local officials are turning into detectives and activists, forming alliances to track down clues about what’s happening inside the homes and what, if anything, state health departments are doing about it.