Home and Community-Based Settings Regulation – Implementation Timeline Extension and Revised Frequently Asked Questions State Medicaid Director Letter

Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued guidance to state Medicaid agencies informing them that the agency will be extending the deadline for ensuring compliance with the Home and Community-Based Settings Regulation, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. CMS recognizes that states have faced significant challenges and delays in their implementation activities, and that service provision and community integration approaches have been disrupted.

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New Visitation Fact Sheet Released.

CANHR has reviewed the various federal and California guidance regarding visitation in long term care facilities and synthesized the rules into a new fact sheet to guide residents and their families.  The fact sheet highlights the types of visitation nursing homes and residential care facilities for the elderly must provide and under what conditions as well as the infection control protocols facilities may impose during visits.   Download the Fact Sheet HERE (PDF)

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States Allow In-Person Nursing Home Visits As Families Charge Residents Die ‘Of Broken Hearts’

By Judith Graham, Kaiser Health News, July 13 2020 (Rosa Garcia/Getty Images) States across the country are beginning to roll back heart-wrenching policies instituted when the coronavirus pandemic began and allow in-person visits at nursing homes and assisted living centers, offering relief to frustrated families. For the most part, visitors are required to stay outside and meet relatives in gardens or on patios where they stay at least 6 feet apart, supervised by a staff member.

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Public Safety Power Shutoff Power Outage Reporting

AFL 20-59 From the California Department of Public Health July 13, 2020 TO: All Facilities SUBJECT: Public Safety Power Shutoff Power Outage Reporting All Facilities Letter (AFL) Summary This AFL notifies health care facilities that California energy companies may proactively turn off electric power to any electric customer in California as a part of a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) event.Facilities should ensure their local energy company is provided with the most up-to-date contact information to receive outage alerts.PSPS events, when used, are regarded as an unusual occurrence.

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Visitor Limitations Guidance

AFL 20-38.3 From the California Department of Public Health July 13, 2020 TO: All Facilities SUBJECT: Visitor Limitations Guidance (This AFL supersedes AFL 20-38.2) All Facilities Letter (AFL) Summary This AFL notifies all facilities of updated visitor guidelines for pediatric patients, patients in labor and delivery, neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) patients, pediatric intensive care unit patients (PICU) patients, and patients at end-of-life and patients with physical, intellectual, and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments.Health facilities may permit a support person to accompany a patient for whom a support person has been determined to be essential to the care of the patient (medically necessary), including patients with physical, intellectual, and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments.This AFL has been updated to clarify that long-term care facilities and hospitals may permit students obtaining their clinical experience as part of an approved nurse assistant, vocational nurse, or registered nurse training program into the facility if they meet the CDC guidelines for healthcare workers.

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Continued bans on nursing home visitors are unhealthy and unethical

Opinion by Jason Karlawish, David C. Grabowski and Allison K. Hoffman, The Washington Post, July 13 2020 Agustina Cañamero, 81, and Pascual Pérez, 84, hug and kiss through a plastic sheet at a nursing home in Barcelona, Spain, on June 22. (Emilio Morenatti/AP) Jason Karlawish is a professor of medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine and co-director of the Penn Memory Center at the University of Pennsylvania.

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An assisted-living facility isn’t allowing visitors. This woman became a dishwasher there to see her husband.

By Sydney Page, The Washington Post, July 13, 2020 Mary Daniel is the chief executive of a small company that helps patients with health-care bills. She just took a part-time job on the cleaning crew at an assisted-living facility — but not because she needed the money. She did it because it was the only way she could have a few stolen hours a week with her husband, who has early-onset Alzheimer’s disease and is a resident there.

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Visits to nursing homes resume in half of US states to the relief of families

By Judith Graham, Kaiser Health News, July 13 2020 (From left) Ina Barbosa, of Attleboro, Mass., and Kimberley Vann-Lites, of Norton, Mass., visit with their mother, Mary Vann, age 85, in person for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic shut down visits to Hebrew Rehabilitation Center in Boston’s Roslindale, on June 11, 2020. (Kaiser Health News)States across the country are beginning to roll back heart-wrenching policies instituted when the coronavirus pandemic began and allow in-person visits at nursing homes and assisted living centers, offering relief to frustrated families.

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Amid pandemic, Californians can now visit loved ones in nursing homes, but few are going

By The Associated Press, July 12 2020 Chaparral House executive director KJ Page, left, hands a mask to Larry Yabroff as he sits with his wife, Mary, while visiting her at the Berkeley skilled nursing facility Friday. (Jeff Chiu / Associated Press) For months, families have pined to see their loved ones who live in California’s skilled nursing facilities, which have been shut down to outside visitors to keep the coronavirus from spreading.

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California now allows nursing home visits, but few happen

By Amy Taxin, Associated Press, July 12 2020 A sign is seen at the entrance to Life Care Center of Kirkland on February 29, 2020 in Kirkland, Washington. Dozens of staff and residents at Life Care Center of Kirkland are reportedly exhibiting coronavirus-like symptoms, with two confirmed cases of (COVID-19) associated with the nursing facility reported so far.

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