Nursing home visitors required to show Covid pass from next week

Nursing home visitors will be required to show proof of vaccination or immunity from Covid-19 from Monday under new guidelines
Nursing home visitors required to show Covid pass from next week

James Cox

Nursing home visitors will be required to show proof of vaccination or immunity from Covid-19 from Monday under new guidelines.

According to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC), residents in nursing homes and other long-term residential care facilities have a right to maintain “meaningful relationships” with people, with visiting considered a key part of that.

The requirement to show Covid certs or immunity from the virus comes as the HPSC updated its guidance, called Normalising Visiting in Long-term Residential Care Facilities.

The European Covid cert or HSE vaccination card will be accepted along with proof of immunity due to prior Covid-19 infection.

For regular visitors, a check will be made only once and not for each visit.

There will be exemptions on compassionate grounds, not limited to when the death of a resident is imminent.

Compassionate and critical events include when a resident becomes particularly distressed, when there is an important life event such as a resident’s birthday or when the resident expresses a “strong sense of need” to see someone, the HPSC said.

The new guidelines come into effect from Monday.

The HPSC guidance states that a person who is fully vaccinated or has immunity is "far less likely" to acquire severed Covid-19 disease as a result of exposure to the virus.

The HPSC added that there is evidence that people who are fully vaccinated are likely to be infectious for a shorter period of time if they do contract Covid.

“It is reasonable, therefore, to expect that people who are fully vaccinated or have immunity as a result of prior infection are less likely to be the source of introduction of virus into a setting such as a [long-term residential care facility],” the guidance states.

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