Trump Administration Suggests COVID-19 Testing at All U.S. Nursing Homes

TUESDAY, May 12, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Coronavirus testing should be conducted on all residents and staff at U.S. nursing homes over the next two weeks, the White House suggested to state governors Monday.

However, the Trump administration isn't ordering testing at the more than 15,000 nursing homes nationwide and the reason for not doing so is unclear, the Associated Press reported.

It's also not known why the administration is recommending testing now, more than two months after the first major COVID-19 outbreak at a U.S. nursing home.

Nursing homes should have been given priority for testing from the start of the coronavirus pandemic, according to Charlene Harrington, a professor emeritus of nursing at the University of California, San Francisco.

"We're two months into it," she told the AP. "If they had done that to begin with, we would've picked up cases early and we wouldn't have so many deaths."

There have been more than 27,000 COVID-19 deaths among residents and staff at U.S. nursing homes and long-term care facilities, which is about a third of all 80,000 COVID-19 deaths in the United States, according to the AP.

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