Care home residents will be able to start receiving more visitors, the Scottish Government has confirmed.
Care home residents will be able to have more than one outdoor visitor and will also be able to have one designated person allowed to visit them indoors provided their home meets strict criteria and the visiting extension has been signed off by local Public Health officials, with infection control measures remaining in place.
Since 3 July care homes which have met this criteria have been able to allow residents to meet with one designated visitor outdoors.
A care home will only be able to permit visiting if they have been COVID-free throughout the pandemic or if all affected residents have fully recovered and no residents have had symptoms for 28 days.
Visitors will need to wear face coverings throughout their visit and physical distancing and hand and cough hygiene will need to be adhered to at all times.
Essential visits, including those involving end of life care, have been permitted throughout the pandemic and should continue to be supported by care homes.
Dr Donald Macaskill, CEO of Scottish Care said:
“The last few months have been exceptionally hard for folks in our care homes and for their families, being separated with only limited, often virtual, contact. At the beginning of July we opened up care homes to outdoor visiting and I am very pleased that in our slow journey back to normal life we can shortly allow the careful start of a degree of indoor visiting subject to local sign off by Public Health Officials. As well as this, it is positive that an increase in the numbers able to visit residents outdoors is now possible.
“Throughout the restoration of family visiting, we have tried to strike the hard balance between getting people back to seeing and being with their families and keeping residents, staff and others safe from the virus. We are very aware of how pernicious this virus is so guidance and measures will remain in place to protect everyone.”