Last week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) issued a COVID-19 Nursing Home Visitation Memorandum consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance. This is good news in addressing ongoing concerns about the psychosocial well-being of residents who've been disconnected from families due to COVID-19. 

Understanding that this is yet another change for you to review and revise your policies around, we've summarized the recommendations and at-a-glance infographic and included it below. 

The memo also explains that compassionate care does not just refer to end-of-life and may include residents:

  • Recently-admitted/struggling with transition
  • Grieving recent friend/family death
  • Needing encouragement to eat/drink
  • Experiencing emotional distress, seldom speaking or frequently crying

The goal of the memo goes beyond guidelines to encourage person-centered caregiving during this time. SNFs should consider the residents’ physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being, and support their quality of life.