Germany nails it - Keep the nursing homes safe!
Germany is a federal republic, like the U.S., which means local governments set public health rules for constraining the coronavirus epidemic. Far from requiring a single national plan, as some recommend for the U.S., federal systems are best suited to dealing with unique local risks (or their absence).
Germany has been one of the most successful countries in minimizing pandemic deaths, largely because it has been one of the most successful in keeping nursing homes safe.
Even now, and even in states where about half of COVID-19 deaths are in long-term elder care facilities, American politicians, pundits and press almost ignore nursing homes and focus instead on restricting mobility among younger people (including students) who are least at risk.
Half of the lethality of COVID-19 has nothing to do with social distancing mandates outside of institutions and instead involves detecting and isolating infected people inside institutions as well as their contacts.
"Germany has been able to limit the number of infections of people older than 70.Of Germany’s total number of cases, 19 percent are older than 70, compared with 36 percent in Spain and 39 percent in Italy. As a result, overall case fatality rates in Germany as of May 2020 are 4.6 percent, compared with 14.1 percent and 12 percent in Italy and Spain, respectively.35 South Korea has fared similarly to Germany by managing to keep infections among the over-70 population to only 11 percent of all cases, reporting a case fatality rate of 17 percent for this group, and maintaining a low overall case fatality rate of 2.4 percent.36 These data seem to indicate that quality of care for older patients does not vary widely among countries, but the success of containment among high-risk populations does."