Limited visitation can resume at some NY nursing homes

Starting July 15, certain nursing homes can allow visitors again, according to the New York State Department of Health; but there will be limitations, according to Commissioner Howard Zucker.

Posted: Jul 10, 2020 5:19 PM

ALBANY, N.Y. – Starting July 15, certain nursing homes can allow visitors again, according to the New York State Department of Health; but there will be limitations, according to Commissioner Howard Zucker.

Only nursing homes that have been coronavirus-free for at least 28 days can welcome visitors back to the facilities, which was a condition set by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

“With the knowledge we now have about how COVID-19 came into nursing homes – mainly through asymptomatic staff and visitors through no fault of their own – it is critical that as we resume visitations to these facilities we do it in a smart and cautious way to ensure the health and safety of residents and staff,” said Zucker.

Several guidelines and restrictions must be followed, including:

  • Two visitors per resident at a time, and one must be at least 18.
  • Only 10% of residents can see visitors per day, in order to maintain social distancing standards.
  • Visitors must have their temperatures taken prior to the visit.
  • Visitors and residents must wear masks during the visit.
  • The nursing home cannot have a staff shortage, and must have workers to support visitation procedures.

Zucker says nursing homes will have to submit visitation plans to the department of health for approval.

The New York State Health Facilities Association issued a statement about the decision, saying, in part: 

“Nursing homes throughout New York have made incredible strides in eradicating COVID-19 from their facilities and today’s visitation policy recognizes the success of their enormous efforts in battling this virus. The policies announced today by the Department of Health are thoughtful and truly safeguard residents, staff and visitors while allowing in-person resident visitation."

See the full guidance issued by the Department of Health below:

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 448052

Reported Deaths: 33085
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Queens714747239
Kings667377314
Bronx524684940
Nassau460522201
Suffolk459562011
Westchester377181454
New York329383178
Richmond156891085
Rockland14747675
Orange11760498
Erie10873689
Monroe5857289
Dutchess5050153
Onondaga4185205
Albany2979134
Oneida2369123
Ulster223595
Niagara1707101
Putnam156963
Sullivan156848
Broome145069
Schenectady137448
Saratoga98517
Rensselaer89542
Columbia58037
Chautauqua5359
Madison48417
Ontario45435
Oswego4183
Tompkins3900
Warren35433
Steuben34242
Fulton33124
Otsego3245
Orleans32254
Greene31918
Herkimer31810
St. Lawrence3144
Genesee3095
Wayne3065
Chemung3053
Washington28714
Cattaraugus2496
Chenango2487
Tioga22225
Montgomery2194
Livingston2018
Cayuga1952
Jefferson1600
Essex1570
Clinton1545
Cortland1500
Wyoming1315
Delaware1294
Seneca1053
Allegany951
Schoharie830
Franklin640
Yates627
Lewis500
Schuyler370
Hamilton140
Unassigned019
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