Abbott Terrace Health Center in Waterbury. Cloe Poisson /

Nursing home deaths in Connecticut continue to hover close to half of all COVID-19-related fatalities in the state, data released Thursday show.

Deaths and presumed deaths of nursing home residents account for 57.6% of all COVID-19 fatalities. That’s up from 50% last week, and also up from 56% earlier in April.

As of Wednesday, 1,249 nursing home residents had died or were believed to have died from the novel coronavirus.

Kimberly Hall North in Windsor and Riverside Health & Rehabilitation Center in East Hartford recorded the most fatalities, with 39 each. Abbott Terrace Health Center in Waterbury had 37 deaths.

Sheridan Woods Health Care Center in Bristol logged 28 fatalities; Litchfield Woods in Torrington had 27; and Lord Chamberlain Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Stratford had 25.

Last week, 23% of all COVID-19 cases in nursing homes resulted in death, the state’s data show. On Wednesday, that rose to 26%.

Riverside Health & Rehabilitation also recorded the most infections, with 125. Abbott Terrace had 120 COVID-19 cases, and Litchfield Woods in Torrington had 114.

Gov. Ned Lamont recently ordered a new round of inspections at Connecticut’s nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Workers with the state Department of Public Health, along with Connecticut National Guard members and officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are conducting unannounced checks on infection controls, personal protective gear, staffing levels, and training at the facilities. They also are surveying employees on conditions inside the buildings.

Lamont has also ordered all nursing homes and assisted living centers to report to the state daily the number of deaths and positive cases each facility has logged.

The assisted living center data was released Thursday for the first time. It shows that as of a day earlier, those facilities had collectively recorded 558 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and 140 suspected cases.

The Village at Buckland Court in South Windsor had the most infections, with 36 confirmed and 40 suspected. Collectively, those cases account for 78% of all residents in the building.

The Waveny LifeCare Network & The Village at Waveny Care Center in New Canaan logged 45 cases, which represent 54% of the facility’s residents.

The Atrium at Rocky Hill had 30 cases – half confirmed and half suspected – accounting for 92% of the facility’s residents. There were only 37 residents in that building as of Wednesday, data show.

Earlier Thursday, on a call with reporters, nursing home officials expressed frustration over the spread of the disease.

“We now know that this insidious virus can be carried and spread by people who show no symptoms,” said Patricia Morse, vice president of the nonprofit nursing home association LeadingAge Connecticut. “Once it enters a building, it becomes very difficult to contain. Our best efforts to defend against its entry have been breached, and the tools and guidance we’ve been given to contain it have continued to change, sometimes on a daily basis.”

Jenna is CT Mirror’s Health Reporter, focusing on health access, affordability, quality, equity and disparities, social determinants of health, health system planning, infrastructure, processes, information systems, and other health policy. Before joining CT Mirror Jenna was a reporter at The Hartford Courant for 10 years, where she consistently won statewide and regional awards. Jenna has a Master of Science degree in Interactive Media from Quinnipiac University and a Bachelor or Arts degree in Journalism from Grand Valley State University.

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