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Updated Nursing Home Visitation Guidelines In New York State

On January 7th, Governor Hochul announced as of January 12, 2022, all visitors to nursing homes must:
  • Present a negative COVID test result one day prior to visitation for antigen tests and two days prior to visitation for NAAT (e.g., PCR) tests.
  • All visitors must wear a well-fitting non-surgical paper mask or a mask of higher quality (i.e., surgical mask, KN95 or N95) at all times during any visitation at the facility. If the visitor wishes, a cloth mask may be placed over the paper mask. The masks must cover both the nose and the mouth.
  • Visitors are also required to physically distance from facility personnel and other patients/residents/visitors that are not directly associated with the specific resident(s) being visited by that individual.
  • There are exemptions to the testing requirement pursuant to 42 CFR § 483.10(f)(4)(i)(C) for representatives of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman who must be provided with immediate access to any resident.
  • Compassionate caregiving visitors, within the meaning of Public Health Law §2801-h, who are visiting in anticipation of the end of a resident’s life or in the instance of a significant mental, physical, or social decline or crisis of a resident.
  • In any case where such an exception is made, the visitor must wear any additional personal protective equipment (PPE) that facility personnel deem appropriate to the situation.
Updated guidance from the New York State Department of Health can be accessed HERE and further guidance from the Department of Health & Human Services Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services can be found HERE.