Coronavirus in Switzerland: Half of Ticino fatalities come from nursing homes

Coronavirus in Switzerland: Half of Ticino fatalities come from nursing homes
Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP
New figures have shown the devastating impact of the coronavirus on elderly people in the southern Swiss canton of Ticino.

Just under half of those who have died in the canton were residents of the canton’s nursing homes, a new report has shown. 

As at Friday evening, a total of 299* people had died in the canton as a result of the coronavirus. Of that number, 136 lived in retirement homes and or old age care facilities.

UPDATE: What you need to know about the coronavirus crisis in Switzerland 

The figures were confirmed by cantonal doctor Giorgio Merlani late on Friday evening. 

Of the cantons 68 aged care facilities, 29 have had confirmed cases of Covid-19. 

Ticino health director Raffaele De Rosa said the cantonal health authorities were investigating why the infection rates – and death tolls – were so high in the region’s retirement homes. 

Widespread testing in the canton’s retirement facilities showed that 441 of all retirement home residents had been tested positive, 361 negative. 

Authorities believe that most of the transmissions took place in the shared living facilities in the retirement homes. 

Ticino was one of the first regions anywhere in Europe to restrict nursing home visits. 

*Note: As at Saturday afternoon, the total has risen to 304 fatalities in the canton – an increase of five since Friday – however figures are not available to show how many of these additional deaths have taken place in nursing homes. 

 


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