WBEZ Investigation Finds High COVID Infection & Death Rates at Infinity Nursing Home Chain

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The investigation also found Infinity consistently maintains low staffing levels.

On Saturday, WBEZ reporter Chip Mitchell published a story unveiling findings from a WBEZ investigation of Infinity nursing homes. It found high rates of COVID infection and death rates and low staffing levels.

The chain’s owners own homes that are in the top two for COVID infection and death rates among large nursing homes. Here are details from the article.

“The chain’s main owners, Michael Blisko and Moishe Gubin, have had more COVID infections and deaths per bed than most other large-scale owners of Illinois nursing homes, a WBEZ investigation found.

As of Nov. 6, Gubin’s ownership stake in long-term care facilities amounted to 8.5 deaths per 100 occupied beds, the second-highest fatality rate of the 15 largest owners in the state. Blisko, meanwhile, had 60.1 infections per 100, the second-highest rate for infections.”

Mitchell also reported on Infinity’s low staffing levels.

All 11 of the Infinity facilities had staffing coverage that was “below” or “much below” the national average during the four quarters leading up to the pandemic, according to federal ratings analyzed by WBEZ.

Infinity is a for-profit nursing home chain. Especially in a pandemic, Infinity needs to put patient & workers ahead of their profits.

The WBEZ investigation found that nursing homes that operate for profit in Illinois have had more infections and deaths per bed than nonprofit facilities. The difference is most stark in the 20 counties hit hardest by the virus. In those counties, for-profit nursing homes have had nearly double the death rates as nonprofit facilities.