Texas opening almost all businesses to 75% capacity except for 3 regions of state
FORT WORTH, Texas — Texas is allowing most of the state’s businesses, including restaurants, retail stores, gyms and office buildings currently open at 50% capacity to open to 75% capacity beginning Monday.Three regions excluded from this 75% capacity measure are the Rio Grande Valley, Laredo, and Victoria, according to Gov. Greg Abbott.In those excluded regions, defined by Trauma Service Areas, COVID-19 hospitalizations remain higher than 15% of total hospitalizations.The 19 regions of the state allowed to open to 75%, including Fort Worth and Dallas, can also immediately resume elective medi...
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
COVID-19, a stigma to many, quietly taking toll on South Florida's Haitian community
MIAMI — Fritzner Fabre, a healthcare aide who cared for coronavirus patients, spent his final days holed up in a ramshackle North Miami-Dade efficiency, coughing and wheezing. He was 41 when he died at the hospital.Another Miami man, architect Pierre Martin, suffered from heart troubles and diabetes. Believing he’d simply caught a cold, Martin refused to go to the hospital until it was too late. He was 69 when COVID-19 killed him.Then there was Pastor Marcel Métayer, who kept his Fort Lauderdale Baptist church open as a spiritual haven for the local Haitian-American community, even as the coro...
COVID lawsuits: Staff at nursing home where 19 died told masks would scare patients
DETROIT — Dennis Williams is haunted by the memory of his mother, Wanda Parker, through the window at the nursing home in Lapeer County, Mich.He said she was begging for help.It was the last time he saw his 68-year-old mother alive. She died of COVID-19 on April 7, two days after she was transported to a hospital from the Villages of Lapeer Nursing & Rehabilitation.Williams said he remembers seeing employees of the facility not wearing masks, gloves or other personal protective equipment (PPE) during his through-the-window visits with his mother before she died. And he’s aware of the significa...
Detroit Free Press
6 months after tragedy struck Life Care of Kirkland, polarized views remain of its handling of COVID-19
SEATTLE — Jean LeBouttier, 94 years old and unable to walk on her own, wants to buy a car — maybe that Chrysler she saw in the parking lot — and then get fish and chips, and then go swim in the ocean.“When can we go?” she asks her daughter. “Can we go now?”“Soon, mom,” Laurie Callahan says to her mother. With her mother’s dementia, it’s easier to let her dream. “We’ll go soon, when this is all over and goes away.”Sitting 6 feet from her daughter and son-in-law, LeBouttier’s attention shifts, and she looks up at the tall trees that line the sidewalk outside Life Care Center of Kirkland. She has...
The Seattle Times
South Florida elder-care facilities say new COVID testing rules are 'impossible'
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — COVID testing requirements for nursing home staff put into effect this week are “impossible” to meet, operators of South Florida facilities say.The federal rules require routine staff testing twice a week in communities with high infection rates — such as Miami-Dade and Broward counties — and once a week in Palm Beach County. The nursing homes must meet the testing requirement for participation in Medicare and Medicaid or incur fines as high as $8,000 per instance when they don’t comply.But nursing home operators say they don’t have the supplies to conduct the tests.Emp...
Commentary: Labor Day 2020: Workers need power
Labor Day 2020 doesn’t have much for us everyday wage earners to celebrate. We’re struggling to pay bills and keep safe as COVID-19 runs its odious course. Our nation has bungled its response to the crisis, and we are paying the price.In July, the U.S. unemployment rate stood just above 10%, down from a more-than-70-year high of 14.7% in April. More than 51 million people have filed for unemployment benefits, over 16 million lost employer-provided health insurance and 26 million are hungry.Lack of federal leadership and scattershot “reopen” plans in states are driving COVID-19 spikes all over ...
Tribune News Service
'I couldn't hide my tears': Families mourn at Detroit memorial to virus victims
DETROIT — Frances Bazel spent her life opening her heart and home to others. But she was forced to take her last breaths alone.The widely loved “community mother” who introduced her family to church, service groups and, over the years, took in 10 foster children, died April 4 from COVID-19, said her granddaughter, Ericka Murria.Bazel, 82, was staying in a Detroit nursing home where she’d been undergoing rehabilitation. It was a place her family thought she’d be safe from the deadly virus. Instead, it’s where she fell ill.“We got a call in the middle of the night that she couldn’t breathe,” rec...
The Detroit News
Guatemalan immigrant who faced a hospital 'medical deportation' has been moved to long-term care facility
PHILADELPHIA — An undocumented, seriously injured Guatemalan immigrant who supporters say was nearly “medically repatriated” by Jefferson Health to a homeland less able to help him has now been moved to a long-term care facility in the Philadelphia region.“If we had not gone to the hospital and raised a stink, he would be in Guatemala right now, and might not be alive right now,” said Philadelphia immigration lawyer David Bennion, director of the Free Migration Project, an advocacy organization.Bennion declined to say where the man, identified by his family only as A.V., is now being treated, ...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Editorial: Let families see relatives in Florida nursing homes. They've been kept apart for too long
Florida Gov. DeSantis should affirm the recommendation of his Task Force on the Safe and Limited Re-Opening of Long-Term Care Facilities to allow family members to finally — finally — see their quarantined elderly loved ones in the flesh.At this point, that’s the least he should do. His executive order in March rightly banned family members from entering nursing homes and assisted living facilities to tamp down on spreading the coronavirus to a particularly vulnerable group. But there were no similar restrictions on vendors, contractors and other visitors entering the facilities.No doubt, this...
'It's always a scary thing': Millions of Americans may have recently lost health insurance
CHICAGO — If Vahap Sarac and his wife can’t find affordable health insurance for their family soon, they’re considering sending their young daughters to live with their grandparents in Estonia.Sarac was furloughed from his job as a banquet captain at the Palmer House Hilton hotel when COVID-19 hit in mid-March, after working there for more than 30 years. The health insurance coverage he has through his job is scheduled to end Oct. 1.Estonia has a far lower rate of deaths from COVID-19 than the U.S. and near-universal health coverage.“We don’t want to separate from our kids,” said Sarac, 55 of ...