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Pa. releases error-ridden nursing home list

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The Investigator

Your guide to the Capitol & stories holding the powerful to account

May 21, 2020 | spotlightpa.org

Nursing homes remain a focal point of criticism of the state's response to the coronavirus outbreak, which has claimed nearly 5,000 lives.

Last week, state Health Secretary Rachel Levine announced a "universal plan" for testing of staff and residents of nursing homes. But an examination by Spotlight PA found the plan falls short of sweeping claims made by Levine and Gov. Tom Wolf, and advocates say more enforcement is needed.

Facing mounting pressure from lawmakers and advocates, state officials this week released a long-awaited list of nursing homes with coronavirus cases or deaths. But as The Inquirer has reported, the data was full of errors. An association that represents facilities told The Times-Tribune in Scranton it may file court action to force the state to take the list down if fixes aren't made.

A review by Spotlight PA shows the state is quietly making changes to the list. We'll have more on the situation soon. 

Finally, a union representing nearly 9,000 nurses across the state says hospitals are misleading the state about the availability of protective equipment. And many more good reads below, so scroll ahead.

Sarah Anne Hughes, Spotlight PA


"It’s not great for anyone to be in a small room with another person for 23 hours a day." 

— Kris Henderson, executive director of the Amistad Law Project, on the prolonged lockdowns inside state prisons to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks
LATEST ON THE NUMBERS: The daily numbers continue to decline, with an average of 822 new cases and 93 deaths each day over the past week.


As of 12 p.m. May 21
Note: The Pennsylvania Department of Health changed how it counts coronavirus deaths in April. This resulted in two sharp increases and a drop in cumulative deaths.
Latest from Spotlight PA
» Pa. officials allow scaled-back real estate operations to resume statewide
» Rebate checks may arrive earlier for some Pennsylvania homeowners and renters
» Pa. will allow 12 more counties to ease coronavirus restrictions
» How long can coronavirus lockdowns last inside Pa. prisons?

From across the state
» BILLY PENN: An inside look at Philadelphia's COVID-19 response
» INQUIRER: Despite high approval numbers, Wolf becomes new GOP villain 
» LNP: State senator's brother, a nurse, denounces sibling's calls to speed up reopening
» MORNING CALL: Hospitals say federal aid isn't enough to cover COVID-19 financial hit
» PENNLIVE: State grant for college students will likely remain stagnant 
» POST-GAZETTE: People with disabilities fear what reopening will mean for them
» WHYY: Capitol lobbyists shift focus to getting special reopening privileges

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Seasonal Siblings (Case No. 39): Casey's mother has three children. The first is named May, the second is named June. What is the third child's name?
Stumped? Get a hint. Feeling smart? Challenge a friend.

Last week's answer: The deer walked across the ice to the island in the winter, but we also accepted that the water rose and turned a peninsula into an island.

Congrats to Norm S.A., who will receive Spotlight PA swag (when we reopen our office!). Others who correctly answered: Joseph S., Jon N., Joel P., Paul H., Rebecca D., Drew C., Lou R., Pat C., Thomas C., Dennis F., Phil C., Dale W., Jean H., Jeff W., Norma N., Mark K., Brett H., Frederic F., and Debbie B.
» This week's Riddler hint: You have all the facts you need.
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