Whitmer administration reissues orders for nursing homes and care facilities

LANSING, Mich. (WJRT) – Coronavirus mandates and restrictions for nursing homes and long-term care facilities will continue under an order from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

The order issued Tuesday is very similar to measures imposed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer last week before the Michigan Supreme Court invalidated the law she had been using to make coronavirus orders. The new order comes under a different state law and isn’t affected by the court ruling.

The new Michigan Department of Health and Human Services order includes the following:

  • Requirements to notify the health department, employees, residents and their families of confirmed coronavirus cases — and post a notice at the main entrance.
  • Restrictions on visitors inside nursing homes and long-term care facilities. Family members or caregivers are only allowed inside to assist with daily living, but facilities can allow outdoor visits by appointment with 6 feet of social distancing.
  • Communal dining inside nursing homes and long-term care facilities will be allowed, as long as they follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These requirements extend to independent living and hospice care facilities for the first time.
  • Child care and juvenile justice facilities can allow any visitors in designated areas inside with social distancing, face mask and prevention practices in place.

“Ensuring the health and safety of vulnerable Michiganders and those under our care is of the utmost importance,” said Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Director Robert Gordon. “This order reestablishes protections that have helped Michigan sharply reduce the loss of life in nursing homes. With the level of COVID in Michigan rising again, these protections are more critical than ever.”

Copyright 2020 WJRT. All rights reserved.

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