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You Can Once Again Visit Relatives In LA Nursing Homes — But There’s A Catch

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After a three-month ban, people with friends and family at nursing homes in L.A. County can once again visit their loved ones — but only if it’s been four weeks since the facility has detected any COVID-19 cases.

That could mean a lot more isolation for many nursing home residents, says Mike Dart, a lawyer with California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform:

“For many facilities, especially in metropolitan areas, it may be many months, it may be a year before they consistently have no residents or health care workers testing positive.”

Dark says the problem is compounded by two factors: Some nursing homes are admitting new residents who have COVID-19; and there are staff who rotate among several different facilities.
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He advocates paying health care workers higher wages so they don’t have to work at multiple nursing homes.

The new visitation rules also say the nursing home must have a two-week supply of personal protective gear, and visitors must wear a cloth face covering, maintain physical distancing, and use hand hygiene while in the facility.

Nursing homes have been a major coronavirus hot spot: As of today, 1,437 residents of these facilities have died; that’s 47% of all virus-related deaths in L.A. County. And while the average number of daily nursing home deaths has been trending down, about 17 residents are still dying every day from COVID-19.

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