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Nursing homes frustrated with sudden guidelines change

Published: Sep. 24, 2020 at 11:32 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - In just one week’s time, the guidelines on long-term care facility visits have changed.

Six days ago, Sayre Christian Village employees were happy to break the news that indoor and outdoor visits could happen again.

“Just 'cause someone tells you you can do something sometimes you shouldn’t do something,” Gov. Andy Beshear said.

New state guidelines prevent visits depending on which zone a facility is in. In Fayette County, it’s red.

“If you carved out the University of Kentucky, we probably would be in that tier one, tier two level,” said Karen Venis, CEO of Sayre Christian Village.

The state determines the color-coded incidence map based on the number of COVID cases for every 100,000 people.

Venis says her team was ready to open its doors after hearing from its federal agency, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

“We actually had a solid plan for how our outdoor visits would take place, we had a solid plan for activities and dining," Venis said.

Governor Beshear says in this case, the state’s rules trump federal guidelines.

“This also gives more information to family members," Beshear said.

But Venis says many residents could suffer from feeling socially isolated.

The governor says the rules are in place to give the most vulnerable more time with their family once the pandemic is over.

Copyright 2020 WKYT. All rights reserved.

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