Updated visitation restrictions allow for senior living campuses to take a step towards normal

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CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) – With more shots into the arms of our most vulnerable, and coronavirus cases down among nursing home residents, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid along with the CDC, recently loosened their once tight visitation restrictions.

Under the new guidance from CMS, facilities can now offer not only outdoor, but indoor visitation.

“Being able to schedule a trip here and not just see them outside a window or see them on Zoom or Facetime but in person, has been great,” said Foxdale Village’s Director of Health Services, Meg Clouser.

According to Clouser the reunions have been emotional for everyone.

“We have couples, married couples that have been married 50, 60, years. And one might live in independent living and one might live in the health center, and they have not been able to visit each other in person for a year,” said Clouser.

But that’s not all CMS’ updated visitations outline.

“It also allows our residents who have been double vaccinated, to be able to touch their loved ones. So our residents can hug their children again, hug their spouses and hold their hand. Which is emotional, and it’s long passed overdue,” said Juniper Village’s Nursing Home Administrator Kathryn Bainbridge.

Still structures like temperature taking, mask wearing and social distancing are still in place to keep both residents and their loved one’s safe.

“That’s our number one priority,” said Clouser.

According to both Juniper and Foxdale, they’ll be monitoring and tracking these visitations to prevent any transmission of Covid-19.

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