As COVID-19 Spikes, a Connecticut Nursing Home Faces Staff-Wide Breakouts, Patient Deaths

With COVID-19 cases increasing across the U.S., a nursing home in Connecticut is facing a breakout of cases among staff members and numerous new COVID-related deaths among patients.

The Greer Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in North Canaan, Connecticut, said in a recent update that since September 30, 89 COVID-19 cases have been reported among both staff and residents. According to the update, 67 residents and 22 staff members were infected with the virus since that date.

According to information from the facility, among the 67 residents that were infected with COVID-19, eight have died and 56 have recovered. All 22 of the staff members that were infected have since recovered, according to the facility.

As of November 15, the nursing home said that there are only three active cases among the 70 individuals living within the nursing home. "Our assisted living facility remains unaffected, this outbreak is in the skilled nursing facility only," the press release said.

"We are encouraged to see only 3 active cases of COVID-19 remaining within our nursing home," Geer Village Senior Community CEO Kevin O'Connell said.

"Of the total 67 residents affected over the course of this outbreak, 56 are fully recovered and off isolation," he continued. "Sadly, we have lost 8 individuals with serious underlying health issues to COVID."

The press release also noted that among the 89 total cases within the nursing home, 87 of them were considered fully vaccinated. The nursing home noted that the previous outbreak occurred before the COVID-19 vaccine booster shot became available.

"Our priority is always the health and safety of the staff and residents at Geer. We are saddened to see some in the Geer family become ill. We pray for their speedy recovery and continue to do everything in our power to minimize the risk across all our operations," O'Connell added.

According to data from the Connecticut Department of Health, from October 27 to November 9, across all nursing homes in the state, 45 new COVID-19 cases were reported in residents. There were also at least 54 COVID-19 cases among nursing home staff during the same time period, the data shows.

As the holidays approach, the U.S. has seen an increase in COVID-19 cases over the past month.

According to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as of Monday, the U.S. had an average of 83,671 cases over the past week. In comparison, on October 24, the nation had an average of around 63,000 new COVID-19 cases per week.

Data from the CDC shows that states such as Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and New Mexico all saw an increase in cases over the past week.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's leading infectious disease expert, recently discussed the increase in COVID-19 cases in several states.

"The only thing that's a little bit disconcerting is that we're beginning to plateau," Fauci said during a Reuters Total Health conference on Tuesday. "In other words, the deceleration of cases is now plateaued, and in some areas of the country, we're starting to see a bit of an uptick."

Nursing Home
A Connecticut nursing home is facing a COVID-19 breakout among staff and patients. Above, a stretcher is moved from an AMR ambulance to the Life Care Center of Kirkland, Washington where one associate and one resident were diagnosed with COVID-19 according to a statement released by the facility in Kirkland, Washington on February 29, 2020. Jason Redmond/Getty