Assemblymember Levine Sworn In to Office, Takes Action to Protect Residents at Skilled Nursing Facilities from COVID-19

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO, CA) – Assemblymember Marc Levine (D- Marin County) today was sworn in to his 5th term in the California State Assembly, representing communities throughout Marin and Sonoma counties. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Levine was sworn in with his Assembly colleagues at Sacramento’s Golden 1 Center to ensure appropriate physical distancing.

 

Upon his swearing in, Levine took immediate action to address COVID-19’s impact on California’s most vulnerable by introducing AB 6 (Levine), which will require the Department of Public Health and the Department of Social Services to create health and safety guidelines and best practices for use by skilled nursing facilities, intermediate care facilities, and congregate living health facilities during a pandemic, public health crisis or other emergency.

 

Residents at California long term care facilities have been some of the most impacted by COVID-19, with 77,461 of the state’s 1.3 million COVID-19 cases and 6,766 of the state’s 19,935 COVID-19 related deaths (34%) occurring at these facilities. In Levine’s Marin County district, 85% of all COVID-19 related deaths occurred at long term care facilities. This pandemic has exposed significant deficiencies in various safety net services, including skilled nursing and other long-term care facilities. AB 6 will provide these facilities with critical information and guidelines to help keep patients, staff and the public safe in the event of a future pandemic or public health crisis.

 

“Some of the most heartbreaking moments of the COVID-19 pandemic have been the loss of a loved one at a skilled nursing or other long term care facility,” said Assemblymember Levine. “Families, including my own rely upon long term care facilities to provide our loved ones with appropriate medical care, compassion and dignity. Disproportionate COVID-19 infections and deaths at these facilities means that we must do more to limit the coronavirus’ deadly spread and ensure that these facilities have the tools and plans they need to protect residents now and in the event of a future pandemic or emergency.”

 

AB 6 will be considered by the California State Assembly in early 2021.

 

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