March 25, 2021

 We have continued with weekly testing of staff for the last several weeks and there have been no new positive test results.  Indoor visitation resumed the week of March 9th as planned. As you are aware, CMS issued new guidance on allowing nursing home visitation. The guidance is found  here: QSO-20-39-NH Revised (cms.gov) We updated our policy immediately to match the new guidance.  Some of the important updates include:

  • Outdoor visitation is preferred even when the resident and visitor are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and always available weather permitting
  • residents who are fully vaccinated may have physical contact with their visitors
  • visitors are not required to be tested or vaccinated nor will it be used as a condition for visits. We will continue to offer testing prior to visits to protect the staff and residents from potential exposure.
  • if the facility has a single positive test result, the facility must suspend indoor visits (with the exception of compassionate visits and those permitted under disability rights laws) until it conducts one full round of testing to determine how visits can safely occur based on the guidance in QSO-20-39-NH.
  • Visits for residents who share a room should not be conducted in the resident room if at all possible.
  • Indoor visits should be limited under the following conditions:       
    • if the nursing home’s COVID-19 county positivity rate is >10% and <70% of residents in the facility are fully vaccinated; 
    •  Residents with confirmed COVID-19 infection, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated until they have met the 2 criteria to discontinue Transmission-Based Precautions; or 
    •  Residents in quarantine, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, until they have met criteria for release from quarantine.
    •  Residents with confirmed COVID-19 infection, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated until they have met the 2 criteria to discontinue Transmission-Based Precautions; or
    • Residents in quarantine, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, until they have met criteria for release from quarantine
  • The facility must continue to adhere to the Core Principles of COVID-19 infection prevention during visits.
Our visitation policies were updated on March 11th to reflect the new guidance. We continue to schedule visits in a manner that is accommodating to the schedules and needs of our residents and their families while managing the staffing support needed to ensure that we continue to adhere to the Core Principles of COVID-19 Infection Prevention.  When you visit, our policy and safety measures will be reviewed with you prior to the visit.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions, concerns or if you would like to discuss the updated guidance.

Sharon Eyster, MA, ACBSW, CNHA, FACHCA
Director of Operations

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