More Scrutiny Needed of Florida’s Coronavirus Isolation Centers, Seniors’ Advocates Say

ABC News: More Scrutiny Needed of Florida’s Coronavirus Isolation Centers, Seniors’ Advocates Say, August, 26, 2020

Advocates for nursing home residents have raised concerns that some facilities being used by Florida officials as isolation units for those who test positive for the coronavirus have a checkered history of citations. Despite official assurances that the facilities have been fully vetted, it’s a move they say could further endanger those who are already highly vulnerable.

Eric Carlson, a long-term care expert with the advocacy group Justice in Aging, said facilities may be motivated to serve as a COVID-19 isolation center because of the “higher Medicaid rates paid by the state for COVID-specific care, or simply by a desire to fill empty rooms.”

Carlson said that the lack of COVID-specific standards puts residents at coronavirus isolation facilities in danger.

The lack of specific standards, he said, “leaves the door open for mediocre or bad facilities to put themselves out for COVID-specific care, in an effort to bring in more residents, in situations where the residents may have few options.”