New guidance from MDH allows for visitation in all nursing homes

[anvplayer video=”5013119″ station=”998122″]

For the first time in nearly a year, Minnesota long-term care facilities are being advised to allow indoor visitation at all times for all residents, with some exceptions, the Minnesota Department of Health announced Thursday.

MDH is following guidance from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that was released on Wednesday. Before Thursday’s announcement, nearly all Minnesota long-term care facilities were cleared for visitation.

Under the new guidelines, visitations would only be limited under specific scenarios:

  • For unvaccinated residents when the county’s COVID-19 positivity rate is greater than 10% and less than 70% of residents are fully vaccinated
  • For residents with confirmed COVID-19 infections, regardless of vaccination status, until they no longer require isolation
  • For residents in quarantine, regardless of vaccination status, until they meet criteria to be released from quarantine

Long-term care ombudsman sees ‘glimmer of hope’ with vaccine; complaints continue about visitation policies

MDH also advises that compassionate care visits should be allowed at all times, regardless of the resident’s vaccination status, the county’s COVID-19 positivity rate or an outbreak at the facility.

So far more than 70% of Minnesotans age 65 and older have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Last month, health officials announced that the drive to vaccinate Minnesotans has contributed to a 97% reduction in coronavirus deaths in long-term care facilities since the state’s peak in November and an 89% decline in cases. At that time, 43% of Minnesota seniors had been vaccinated.