Few nursing facilities have one-day COVID-19 test turnaround
(HealthDay)—Few U.S. skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) have a COVID-19 test turnaround of less than one day, according to a research letter published online Oct. 30 in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Brian E. McGarry, P.T., Ph.D., from the University of Rochester in New York, and colleagues performed a cross-sectional study using the Medicare COVID-19 Nursing Home Database to examine facility-reported test result turnaround time at all Medicare-certified SNFs. Data were included for 15,065 respondents.
The researchers found that by Sept. 7, 2020, test result turnaround time was less than one day for 6.2 and 4.8 percent of SNFs testing staff and residents, respectively. By the week ending Sept. 27, 2020, the rates increased to 13.5 and 9.5 percent, respectively. In hot-spot counties, 10.4 and 8.5 percent of SNFs testing staff and residents, respectively, had less than one-day turnaround by Sept. 7, 2020, with increases to 16.4 and 13.2 percent, respectively, by the week ending Sept. 27, 2020. Nationally, by Sept. 7, 2020, test result turnaround time was three days or longer for 55.1 and 45.5 percent of SNFs testing staff and residents, respectively, and for 43.3 and 41.3 percent in hot-spot counties, respectively. These figures decreased to 39.8 and 36.6 percent and 29.9 and 30.4 percent by Sept. 27, 2020, nationally and in hot-spot counties, respectively.
"Unfortunately, even in hot spot counties where all facilities should have received point-of-care instruments by mid-August, less than 17 percent of SNFs had a turnaround of less than one day," the authors write.
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