BOAZ, Ala. (WAFF) - As COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the Tennessee Valley, nursing homes are also feeling the impact as they see an increase in positive residents.
At Diversicare of Boaz, there are currently 15 residents who tested positive for COVID-19 at the nursing home.
Alabama Nursing Home Association Director of Communications John Matson said with the recent increase in cases across the state, it is vital for local counties to reduce the community spread.
“Researchers at Harvard, Brown and University of Chicago found that outbreaks in cases in nursing homes correlates with outbreaks in cases in the community. Nursing homes are active parts in the community and they are going to be reflective of what’s happening in that area. So, as we see cases rise in that area we know about a week or two later we will see more cases,” said Matson.
Matson said right now, if a nursing home is in a county with a positivity rate of 10 percent or greater, they will not be allowed to accept visitors
Currently, Marshall County is in that high-risk category.
Matson said the federal government requires nursing homes to test all staff members at least twice a week.
If the nursing home has a case of COVID-19 among its residents or staff then the nursing home has to test its staff at least twice a week until there are no new cases of CPVID-19 for 14 days.
WAFF 48 contacted Diversicare of Boaz for a comment, but have not heard back yet.
Matson said he would like to remind everyone to practice safety measures and social distance and as we head into the holiday to help reduce the spread.