Indoor visits to be allowed in South Carolina nursing homes if they meet these criteria

Charleston, South Carolina – Visitations finally to be allowed in South Carolina nursing homes and assisted living facilities. This decision was made on Wednesday by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

The facilities are obligated to open their doors and allow in-person indoor visits for outside visitors if they meet the following requirements:

  • A less than or equal to 10 percent positivity rate in the county in which the facility is located, using DHEC’s data
  • No COVID-19 cases among staff and/or residents in the past 14 days
  • Maintained Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services core principles of COVID-19 infection prevention

The average county percent positivity rate in South Carolina is 10%. To be exact, 40 out of 46 counties have a percent positivity rate equal or below 10%.

According to the latest data and reports, the six counties that not qualify for opening the nursing facilities at this time are: Allendale, Barnwell, Chesterfield, Lancaster, McCormick and York.

The health experts say this measure will be a positive change for the mental health and well-being of nursing home residents.

“The general intention of this is so that vaccinated grandparents can get together with their unvaccinated grandchildren,” Dr. Jane Kelly, Assistant State Epidemiologist, says.

Visitors are not obligated to be vaccinated to visit the facilities. However, they will have to wear masks all the time and practice social distance. They will also have to wash their hands before entering and when leaving the homes.

Nursing homes will be obligated to check the positivity rate in the county on day to day basis until otherwise stated.

Monica Doyle


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