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Upton Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Keep Nursing Home Residents Safe During COVID-19 & Future Outbreaks

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Washington, June 19, 2020 | Josh Paciorek (202-225-3761) | comments

ST. JOSEPH, Mich.  U.S. Rep. Fred Upton - along with Reps. Dan Kildee, Michael C. Burgess, and Ron Kind - introduced the bipartisan Infection Control Training and Support Act, legislation that would provide additional resources for nursing homes to enhance quality of care and safety measures during the COVID-19 pandemic and future public health crises. The legislation would provide an additional $210 million for quality and infection control support for nursing homes.

“Nursing homes have been disproportionately impacted during the coronavirus crisis – here in southwest Michigan and across the nation,” Upton said. “Nearly one-third of COVID-19 deaths in Kalamazoo county and almost three-fourths of COVID-19 deaths in Berrien County have been residents of long-term care centers. That’s tragic. Our seniors are among the most vulnerable and in our society, and we must do more to better care for their safety. Today’s bipartisan bill will provide the necessary support our nursing homes need to provide a safe environment for both residents and caregivers.”

Nationwide over 32,000 nursing home residents have died from the virus, which is over one-fourth of COVID-19 deaths.

The Infection Control Training and Support Act would require the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to provide $210 million to Skilled Nursing Facilities struggling with infection control through the Medicare Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) Program. The text of this legislation was included in the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, which passed the House on May 15th.

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