The Department of Health (DOH) today released new guidance related to the resumption of limited visitation and activities in nursing homes.
Under the revised guidance, nursing homes may resume limited visitation and activities beginning September 17, 2020 if the nursing home:
  • Is fully compliant with state and federal reporting requirements
  • Has completed the NY Forward Safety Plan and submitted a copy to DOH
  • Has no staffing shortages as evidenced by the facility’s staffing plan
  • Has no new COVID-19 cases as reported to DOH via the daily HERDS survey for a period of no less than 14 days
  • Has access to adequate testing and has executed and operationalized arrangements with laboratories to process COVID-19 testing
  • Adheres to written screening protocols for staff, visitors and residents
All visitors must have documentation of a negative COVID-19 test result within 7 days of their visit.The number of visitors to the nursing home must not exceed 10% of the resident census at any time and only 2 visitors will be allowed per resident at any one time. Individuals under the age of 18 are prohibited from visiting residents at this time.
If all criteria are met, DOH has also outlined guidelines for visitation and activities that include social distancing measures and the wearing of face masks and coverings. According to these guidelines, visitation should be limited to outdoor areas, weather permitting and under certain circumstances in an inside, well ventilated space with no more than 10 individuals. At this time, visitation is strictly prohibited in resident rooms or care areas, with few exceptions.
As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments. You can also contact DOH directly at