Maryland to remove child care capacity limits, allow indoor visitation at nursing homes

As coronavirus infections and deaths continue at a low, steady pace in Maryland, Gov. Larry Hogan on Thursday relaxed more pandemic-induced restrictions — and encouraged residents to prepare for the upcoming flu season.

Nursing homes that have limited visitors to outdoor meetings will now be able to offer indoor visits if the facility doesn’t have an outbreak or any new positive cases in the last 14 days, Hogan said. If the local jurisdiction’s positivity rate rises above 10%, no visitors will be allowed, as well.

And child care centers can increase the number of children they serve. Providers will now be able to operate at full capacity.

Since May, Hogan has gradually lifted restrictions so that almost all businesses are open in some fashion, though most must operate with capacity limits and follow health precautions. Masks continue to be required in indoor spaces and outdoors when social distancing is not possible.

The expansion of child care will likely come as a relief to both child care businesses that operate on tight margins and parents who have struggled to find quality care while public schools continue to operate remotely.

Child care centers have been limited to no more than 15 individuals per classroom since July — an increase over restrictions from earlier in the pandemic, but less than the pre-pandemic limits of up to 20 children per group for certain ages.

State schools superintendent Karen Salmon said health officials have seen few cases in child care centers, calling the operators “heroes” who go out of their way to keep children safe. But even as more providers reopened — 82% — demand remains high due to classroom restrictions.

Salmon said that hopefully this action will help crack down on the number of unlicensed child care centers that have opened up to facilitate

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CT relaxes visitation restrictions at nursing homes

Families will be able to visit their loved ones living in nursing home indoors and in person “effective immediately,” state health officials said Monday.

The state’s Department of Public Health issued a new order, rescinding the restrictions on indoor visits.

The announcement came following a directive from the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, the

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Indoor Visitation At Connecticut Nursing Homes Resumes

CONNECTICUT — Long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, may resume indoor visitation effective immediately, Gov. Ned Lamont announced Monday.

The new order follows newly issued guidance from the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and rescinds a previous directive from the Connecticut Department of Public Health.

“Making the decision to limit in-person visits at nursing homes is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do as governor, but amid the outbreak of this pandemic that is impacting the lives of so many people in our senior population, I knew it was the right thing to do,” Lamont said. “Each facility is strongly urged to develop a visitation plan and strictly adhere to it to the greatest extent possible so that we can keep this virus from spreading and impacting our most vulnerable patients.”

Nursing homes may open for indoor visitation under certain conditions, including that there has been no new onset of COVID-19 cases in the last 14 days and the facility is not currently conducting outbreak testing. Indoor visitation will be suspended if there is a positive coronavirus case among staff or residents. In addition, facilities and visitors must adhere to the following protocols, known as the “Core Principles of Infection Control:”

  • Screening for all who enter the facility;

  • Hand hygiene recommendations;

  • Personal protection equipment as applicable;

  • Social distancing requirements;

  • Instructional signage throughout the facility;

  • Cleaning and disinfecting high frequency touched surfaces in the facility;

  • Effective cohorting of residents as applicable;

  • Visitors should be able to adhere to the core principles and staff should provide

  • monitoring for those who may have difficulty adhering to core principles;

  • Facilities should limit the number of visitors per patient at one time and limit the total number of visitors in the facility one at a time (based on the size of

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