Thursday, July 2, 2020

Updates to CDC Website

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated their guidance on testing individuals in nursing homes. While much of the guidance remains consistent, some key changes include: 
  • New language highlights the importance of facilities having a testing plan in place, following state and local guidance, as well as CMS’ recommended reopening process
  • When conducting repeat viral testing in response to an outbreak (defined as one or more confirmed cases), facilities should repeat testing for all previously negative resident between 3 to 7 days, until testing identifies no new cases among residents or HCP for at least 14 days.
  • The CDC does not recommend testing the same individual more than once in a 24-hour period.
  • New guidance around contact tracing has been included. 
  • The CDC highlights that state and local officials may decrease frequency of testing in areas with minimal to no community transmission. 
  • Clinicians are encouraged to consider testing for other causes of respiratory illness, such as influenza 
Per the CDC, this guidance can also apply to other long-term care facilities, including assisted living.  

The CDC has also updated several other aspects of their guidance for Preparing for COVID-19 in Nursing Homes. These updates include:  

Assign One or More Individuals with Training in Infection Control to Provide On-Site Management of the IPC Program. 
  • CDC states this should be a full-time role for at least one person in facilities that have more than 100 residents or that provide on-site ventilator or hemodialysis services. Smaller facilities should consider staffing the IPC program based on the resident population and facility service needs identified in the facility risk assessment.
  • Note, CMS requirements for Infection Preventionists has not changed.   
Report COVID-19 cases, facility staffing, and supply information to the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) Long-term Care Facility  (LTCF) COVID-19 Module weekly. 


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