Nursing Homes Close to Approving In-Person Visitation Again
By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter Shanaya Daughtrey
Tuscaloosa, AL- Since the pandemic began in March, Alabama nursing homes have not allowed visitors.
The Alabama Nursing Home Association announced they are working toward more opportunities for visitations, so residents can see their loved ones.
Evidently, in an effort to protect those most vulnerable to the coronavirus, they say their facilities are either seeing no, or few cases.
Despite conscience efforts, 219 out of their 231 nursing homes have reported exposure at some point during the pandemic.
According to Communications Director John Matson, nursing homes are starting to offer outdoor visits while enforcing social distancing guidelines.
“For our nursing homes that are offering outdoor visitations, many of them have built a plexiglass enclosure, which the nursing home resident sits on one side of it and their family members or friends sit on the other side of it and they’re able to have an in-person face to face visit,” said Matson.
With these outdoor visitations, maintaining social distancing and complying with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services guidelines, is of utmost importance.
“Now of course, we’ve got to maintain social distancing. We can’t allow the loved one and the resident to hug each other, and everyone must wear masks so we’re in compliance with the CMS guidance on allowing these type of outdoor in-person visits,” said Matson.
Matson said nursing homes still encourage family and friends to schedule window visits, or phone and video chat calls.