The World Health Organization has released a policy brief on preventing and managing Covid-19 in long-term care facilities.
Older people, especially those living in long-term care facilities, are one of the groups that are at highest risk for Covid-19.
“In many countries, more than 40% of Covid-19-related deaths have been linked to long-term care facilities – and up to 80% in some high-income countries,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a briefing in Geneva on Thursday.
The policy brief lists key actions that must be taken by policymakers and national and local authorities to protect older people, Tedros said. They range from integrating long-term care into national response, to providing support for family and voluntary caregivers.
For each objective, there are actions that can be taken by the facilities themselves, and examples of actions that have been taken by countries across the world.
“The brief also suggests ways to transform long-term care services so that older people can receive quality-of-care that respects their rights, freedoms and dignity,” Tedros said.
Tedros also acknowledged those who worked in long-term care facilities across the world, “who are doing heroic work to save lives and protect those in their care,” he said. “I salute you.”