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Spike in Covid-linked deaths in US, 17 bodies found at nursing home in New Jersey

The police in a small New Jersey town acted upon an anonymous tip about a body being stored in a shed outside one of the largest nursing homes in the US.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | April 16, 2020 7:30:06 pm
Workers wearing personal protective equipment bury bodies in a trench on Hart Island in the Bronx borough of New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

A morgue intended to hold no more than four people saw 17 bodies piled inside in a town in New Jersey in US, earlier this week, reported NYT.

The police in a small New Jersey town acted upon an anonymous tip about a body being stored in a shed outside one of the largest nursing homes in the US. Upon arrival, the police removed the corpse from the shed only to discover 17 more bodies in a small morgue.

“They were just overwhelmed by the amount of people who were expiring,” said Eric C. Danielson, the police chief in Andover, a small township in Sussex County, the state’s northernmost county, according to the New York Times.

The 17 deceased were among 68 recent deaths linked to the long-term care facility, Andover Subacute and Rehabilitation Center I and II, including two nurses, officials said.

“The challenge we’re having with all of these nursing homes, is once it spreads, it’s like a wildfire,” said Rep. Josh Gottheimer, a Democrat who got the call Saturday, asking for body bags. “It’s very hard to stop it.”

About 41 staff members, including an administrator of the facility, have tested positive for the virus, the county health records stated. Amidst, staff shortage, increasingly sick patients and a lack of personal protective gear, the state Department of Health said it sent two shipments containing 3,200 surgical masks, 1,400 N95 masks and 10,000 gloves to the nursing homes.

“It’s scary for everybody — for the residents and for the staff,” Gottheimer said. “What is surprising to me is how many are dying in house, versus the hospital.”

The United States has, so far, recorded a total of 30,985 deaths and over 6 lakh people have been tested positive of the Covid-19. The New York city has taken the worst hit in the country with 10,899 deaths, while New Jersey has recorded over 2,500 deaths.

(With NYT inputs)

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