July 28, 2020

Last month, it was discovered that the COVID-19 death counts in nursing homes were greatly over-counted after the Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) required 15,000 nursing homes to report COVID-19 detailed data retroactively and the data became scrambled. For example, the Dellridge Health & Rehabilitation Center in New Jersey, a 96-bed facility, had 753 COVID-19 deaths, the most in the US, but the nursing home itself only reported 16 COVID-19 deaths.

When the administrator of the Saugus Rehab and Nursing Center in Saugus, Massachusetts, heard that a new Medicare website reported her facility had 794 confirmed cases of COVID-19 — the second highest in the country — and 281 cases among staff, she gasped.

“Oh my God. Where are they getting those numbers from?” said Josephine Ajayi. “That doesn’t make any sense.”

Those weren’t the numbers that her facility reported to the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network, under new rules from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), she said.

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