Nursing Homes Will Remain Closed to Visitors for Now.
Governor DeWine announced a plan to lift restrictions on visitation at assisted living homes in Ohio.
Beginning on June 8, 2020, properly prepared assisted living facilities and intermediate care facilities for individuals with developmental disabilities can begin to allow outdoor visitation.
The lifted restrictions do not yet apply to nursing homes.
“We will continue to examine, monitor, and adjust as we carefully and thoughtfully lift restrictions on visitation,” said Governor DeWine. “The well-being of our residents has been, and remains, central to our decision-making.”
The decision to move forward with outdoor visitation for assisting living facilities and intermediate care facilities was made while considering requests from families and residents and considering the impact on the quality of life a prolonged loss of connection can have on an individual. Advocates and providers in the aging and development disabilities communities were also consulted, and guidelines for visitation were jointly developed by the Academy for Senior Health Sciences, Leading Age Ohio, the Ohio Assisted Living Association, the Ohio Health Care Association, and the Ohio Medical Director’s Association.
Because each facility is different, each facility can determine how to best implement outdoor visitations, however, at a minimum, all facilities must develop a policy that includes:
- Screening for temperatures and symptom-reporting for visitors
- Scheduled hours and time limits for visits
- Proper social distancing measures
- Face coverings
- Resident, family, and friend education about the risks of the spread of COVID-19
Consideration for visitors during end-of-life situations will also be expanded. Providers should notify family members when a resident’s substantial change of condition indicates end-of-life is approaching. Providers should not wait until a resident is actively dying to allow visitors.