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Swamped ERs Mean Opportunity and Danger for Home-Care Industry

  • Health experts see training challenges for home-health workers
  • Testing gaps create potential ‘tinder box’ for in-home aides
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Photographer: Scott Eells/Bloomberg

Jennifer Burger worries that her elderly parents were exposed to Covid-19 by a kindly source: their home-care aide.

First, Burger got a call informing her that the woman, who cooked, cleaned and helped her parents with such activities as bathing, couldn’t work because she’d been diagnosed with pneumonia. Later, Burger learned she was being tested for the new coronavirus. By the time Burger, an Atlanta physician, drove three hours to her parents’ home in Albany, Georgia, the caregiver had tested positive and was on a ventilator.