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March 26, 2021

Reclassification of Housing Status of COVID-19 Deaths to Nursing Homes Raises Questions in Wisconsin

Over the past several weeks, state officials in Wisconsin have attributed 1,000 unknown COVID-19 deaths to long-term care facilities. The updated statistics show that 45 percent of COVID-19 deaths in Wisconsin were in long-term care facilities. Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers has defended the delayed classification by asserting that quicker classification would not have changed Wisconsin’s COVID-19 response. Evers stated that state officials have always known that long-term care residents were at greater risk of dying of COVID-19 and were “on-site and helping these nursing homes from the get-go.” Wisconsin Republican members believe the delayed classification “obscured the truly dire situation in Wisconsin’s long-term care facilities” and that quicker classification would have allowed medical personnel to divert more resources towards long-term care facilities.