Hospices Struggle to Access Patients in Nursing Homes Amid Pandemic
Posted on Monday, March 23, 2020 12:36 PM
As older adults with health complications are at greatest risk with the COVID-19, nursing homes are restricting access to their facilities. This is stopping hospice providers to be able to access their patients.
“About 10% of our 70 nursing homes here in Pinellas County [Florida] are not allowing hospice personnel access to our hospice patients residing in nursing homes,” said Scott Kistler, vice president of strategy and business development for Empath Health, a Florida-based hospice and palliative care service provider. “And that’s not particular to us. It’s a widespread problem.”
CMS advises nursing homes to significantly reduce visitors and nonessential personnel in their facilities, but most seem unaware that hospice providers are consider essential personnel.
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