The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Nursing Home Industry Cares … about the $$$

Jun 15, 2020

A million and a half older people live in nursing homes or assisted living facilities, and as of now, some 43,000 have died from COVID-19.

The industry to look after the elderly grew as more people live longer, with smaller families not able to care for older members. The industry got funded by Medicare and Medicaid, and charged thousands of dollars paid by residents or their families every month. The largest chains made billions, and were soon bought up by big investors. Their executives are paid millions while aides and maintenance and cafeteria workers often get minimum wage, with few benefits.

During the pandemic, the so-called CARES Act passed on five billion dollars to help nursing homes. Most of it went to the big chains. Yet aides and other staff report they must buy their own protective equipment. So much for “caring.”

In Maryland, a small state, the virus has caused about 2,700 deaths so far, two thirds of which are among people over age 70. The state admits half of these are in nursing homes, while manipulating the statistics to show fewer deaths. The governor bragged about buying 500,000 test kits, but even now, six weeks later, all residents of all facilities for the elderly have NOT been tested, nor has their workforce unless the residents or the staff showed symptoms. So much for “caring” for the elderly.

Care? No, this is a society that cares only about profit. For those who are sick, it shows no care, no organization to help—unless they have enough money to pay for insurance.