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Nearly Half Of Coronavirus Deaths In Mass. Are From Long Term Care Facilities

EASTON (CBS) -- Mary Frederickson's family is heartbroken. The 80-year-old is alone and quarantined at Southeast Rehabilitation and Skilled Care Center in Easton.

Days ago her sister Jeanette who was living with her at the facility, died of COVID-19. Just last week, Mary tested positive for the coronavirus as well.

Mary's daughter, Gloria Goodwin, got emotional talking about how hard it has been to not be able to see her mother, especially since she cannot comfort her while she is grieving for her sister.

"We just been doing the best we can to make sure she knows she's loved," said Goodwin. "My son went over there, he was able to put up a big sign 'We love you Grammy.'"

As of Tuesday, in Massachusetts, 3,907 residents and staff in long term care facilities homes tested positive for the coronavirus and 444 residents have died, which is nearly half of the state's total COVID-19 deaths.

Coronavirus cases and deaths related to long term care facilities in Massachusetts as of Tuesday (Photo Via Mass. Department of Public Health)

Gloria worrying about her mother and seeing all of the deaths and cases has been scary.

The National Guard is testing residents and staff at nursing homes and long term care facilities - the hot spots for the coronavirus - but they are not testing everyone.

The Massachusetts Senior Care Association sent an urgent letter to the governor Tuesday asking for more testing and personal protection equipment.

Representative James Arciero said more testing and more Department of Public Health oversight of nursing care facilities is key during the pandemic.

The senior care association is also looking to increase Medicaid funding, saying without the additional money many of the nursing homes will not survive the crisis.

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