Important Updates to Our Visitor Policies
Updates to Visitor Policies in Waiver and ICF Settings
Our agency recognizes that a lack of in-person engagement with family and friends who live outside of the facility may significantly diminish a person’s quality of life, making visits necessary to address the person’s emotional wellness despite potential physical health risks.
Per State guidance, as a provider, we must make every effort to mitigate risks to the highest degree possible. Visits for people in congregate care settings present a significant challenge due to the number of vulnerable people living together and the number of staff needed to ensure visits are conducted safely. We are also required to know where the residents have been or who has had contact with them as it is critical to contain the spread of infection if someone tests positive for COVID-19. Contact tracing is much more difficult for the provider to monitor or ascertain where visitors may have been and the people they have been in close contact with prior to visits.
The Ohio Department of Health’s (ODH) suspension of visitation in all long-term care facilities remains in effect. However, at the discretion of each provider, planning for OUTDOOR ONLY visits may be an option. Per the guidance document provided, the agency must consider all implications for resident’s physical and mental well-being for when to allow personal visitations. Before visitations may be considered, the individual’s team must evaluate to ensure the visitation is going to be emotionally beneficial and knowing that social distancing prohibits hugging, handholding, and following PPE guidance.
Per the ODH guidance, we must also consider the following when approving visits:
- Is the home clear of quarantine/isolation cases for staff and individuals?
- Is the home clear of staff positive cases (for 14 days since last staff who tested positive was in facility)?
- Have other factors increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the last 14 days with/without COVID-10 consequences?
We have designated spaces in each location for contact-free, outdoor visitation ONLY. No visitors are permitted to go into homes or apartments for any reason.
The following are guidelines for the visitations effective June 8th, 2020 for locations where we serve as a provider: