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Can I Visit a Family Member in a Nursing Home During COVID-19?

COVID-19 has impacted virtually every industry in the world, requiring people to make sacrifices and adapt. Though anyone can become infected with the coronavirus, some of the most vulnerable people are older adults over the age of 65, which is why nursing homes are at high risk. According to reports, 2 out of every 5 U.S. deaths from COVID-19 have occurred in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.

Nursing homes are being ravaged by the virus around the country, and there are various factors that have contributed to this spread, a main one being understaffing. Nursing homes are notorious for high turnover rates, and a lack of staff can contribute to nursing home resident neglect.

Other contributing factors include:

  • Physical contact between residents and staff
  • Shortage of COVID tests
  • Residents sharing rooms
  • Residents being transferred from hospitals and other settings
  • Staff members who work in multiple facilities

You may be wondering whether it’s safe to visit your loved one in their nursing home, and the answer is that it depends on which state the nursing home is in. If you’re in South Carolina, updated guidelines from the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) are allowing outdoor visitation as facilities based on a few key factors.

A facility’s ability to allow visitation depends on:

  • How many cases of COVID the facility has
  • The facility’s staffing capabilities and PPE availability
  • The facility’s ability to comply with testing requirements

Outdoor Visitation Guidelines

According to DHEC guidelines, outdoor visitation is allowed as long as there haven’t been any COVID cases in the facility within the last 14 days. Unfortunately, due to strict guidelines, your visiting time will be limited to 15 minutes unless you can provide documentation of a negative test result within the last five days or a positive antibody test that was performed in the last 30 days.

Other visitor rules include:

  • Only two visitors can see a resident at one time
  • Visitors must be 12 years old or older
  • Children must be accompanied by a guardian
  • Visitors must wear surgical face masks over the mouth and nose for the duration of the visit and maintain social distancing
  • Visitors must be screened for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and must comply with a temperature check
  • Visitors must use alcohol-based hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting the outdoor area

Call Us After Nursing Home Neglect

Bostic Law Group, P.A. is always on the side of everyday people and victims of abuse, including people who have been injured or abused in nursing homes. When you select a nursing home for your loved one, you entrust the home’s staff with their care and expect your family member to be treated with respect and compassion. It can be painful, then, when you discover that your loved one has been harmed by neglect.

Nursing home neglect can take many forms and doesn’t just include abuse at the hands of caregivers. Neglect can involve malnutrition and dehydration, bedsores, overmedication, and any injuries or illness that result from less than adequate care. Your family doesn’t have to suffer in silence – our law firm is ready to help you pursue justice and secure the compensation you deserve.

Contact our team online or by phone at (843) 350-9646 for a free consultation if you or someone you love has been injured or abused in South Carolina. We can get started on your case today.