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State health director signs orders amending visitation guidelines for nursing homes, assisted living

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Posted at 12:49 PM, Mar 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-23 12:49:24-04

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Department of Health Director Stephanie McCloud has signed amended health orders that loosen the restrictions on individuals visiting nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

The state said that the general visitation requirements for nursing homes remain unchanged, such as having to schedule appointments in advance and mandatory mask wearing.

Here are the amended orders, according to the ODH:

  • Ohio is requiring that visitation be permitted whenever safety protocols can be met. Previously, visitation was permitted, not required.
  • Vaccinated residents may have physical touch with their visitor while wearing a mask. Previously, touch was discouraged.
  • Visits may occur in a resident’s private room, as opposed to the previous requirement of a separate visitation area.
  • Thirty minutes should serve as the minimum amount of time for a visit. Previously, 30 minutes was the maximum time to visit.

Part of the changes also include the requirement that assisted living facilities test vaccinated staff once per week and unvaccinated staff twice per week.

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