New York State Health Department Updates Nursing Home Visitation Policy

Ann / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

ALBANY – New York State health leaders sent out updated guidance for nursing home visitation this week, now allowing them to open to visitors as long as they have been COVID-19 free for 14 days.

The New York State Department of Health previously sent a directive stating a nursing home must be COVID free for 28 days before visitors are allowed. The previous guideline was set by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The new rules will go into effect on Thursday. It requires a visitor to submit a negative COVID test performed in the last seven days. Visitation will be refused by the facility if the individual fails to present a negative test result, exhibits any COVID-19 symptoms, or does not pass screening questions.

Visitors must undergo temperature checks, wear face coverings and socially distance during the visit, visitors under the age of 18 are prohibited. The number of visitors to the nursing home must not exceed 10% of the resident census at any time and only two visitors will be allowed per resident at any one time.

Nursing Homes accepting visitors will be required to send their visitation plan to NYSDOH and affirmatively attest that they are following the guidance.


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