S.C. Updates Nursing Home Visitation Guidelines

Midsection of elderly woman holding hand of nurse. Caregiver is supporting senior female. They are at home during coronavirus lockdown.

COLIUMBIA, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) South Carolina released Friday, March 19th that all nursing homes and assisted living facilities in the state are required to offer outdoor and/or indoor visitation, with few exceptions.

This is based on new guidelines released by South Carolina DHEC.

According to the release as of today facilities are required to allow visitation at all times and for all residents. The release says there are some circumstances involving high risk COVID-19 transmission when facilities should limit indoor visits for specific residents. Those circumstances are listed below.

  • Unvaccinated residents: if the facility’s COVID-19 county positivity rate is greater than 10 percent and less than 70 percent of residents in the facility are fully vaccinated
  • Residents with confirmed COVID-19 infection, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, until they have met the criteria to discontinue Transmission-Based Precautions
  • Residents in quarantine, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, until they have met criteria for release from quarantine
  • A new case of COVID-19 is identified, a facility must suspend indoor visitation pending the results of a round of facility-wide testing

The release goes on to say before these updated guidelines, 177 facilities reported they were not allowing visitation based on previous visitation guidelines.

According to South Carolina DHEC as of today, 100 percent of the state’s nursing homes have had their first and second COVID-19 vaccination clinics completed and 95 percent of their final third clinics completed.

DHEC recommends the public to reach out to their loved one’s facility to confirm its visitation status before visiting.

If you have concerns about a facility that isn’t properly following the guidelines you can submit a complaint to DEHC here: https://scdhec.gov/health-regulation/healthcare-facility-licensing/facility-specific-info/nursing-home-information-1

For more information visit: https://scdhec.gov/covid19/nursing-homes-extended-care-facilities-impacted-covid-19

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