Monday, March 15, 2021
CMS recently announced that it was expanding visitation, but with some safeguards still in place. CMS Updates Nursing Home Guidance with Revised Visitation addresses indoor visits, indoor visits during an outbreak, compassionate care visits, ombudsman visits, and vaccinations for both visitors as well as surveyors. The revised guidance is available for download here.
Prior to the CMS revised guidance, there was some effort to increase visitation, including efforts by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. Consumer Voice, Other Advocates Call on CMS to Safely Open Nursing Home Doors offers this call to action: "[C]alling on CMS to restore full visitation rights as soon as possible. In the interim, and during the Public Health Emergency only, we are urging CMS to ensure that: ... [e]ach resident is allowed an essential support person (ESP) ... [and] [a]ll residents are allowed indoor and outdoor visitation in addition to visits with an ESP. " Their letter of recommendation is available here. More info about their efforts, including a virtual rally, are available here and here.