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CMS Issues Reminder on Access & Visitation Rights (June 28, 2013)

In a June 28, 2013 letter (Ref: S&C: 13-42-NH), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a reminder about the rights of residents to receive visitors. 24-hour visitation must be allowed for residents as long as they have consented to having visitors, with a few restrictions. Following the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a provision of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and in time for Pride Month, this reminder states that “residents must be notified of their rights to have visitors on a 24-hour basis, who could include, but are not limited to, spouses (including same-sex spouses), domestic partners (including same-sex domestic partners), other family members and friends.

This is effective immediately.

2 Responses

  1. bekka

    i am being denied access to my mother after 8 p.m. and before 10 a.m. If i wish to visit outside of the visiting hours the facility is requiring that I call ahead. This is not what the regulation states. They have been getting away with this since May 1, 2013.

    1. CMSCG

      Hi Bekka,

      If the facility is requesting a courtesy call during those time windows, but still allowing you to visit afterwards, then they are not denying you visitation. While you are feeling frustrated by this, remember that the staff may be getting your mother up and ready early in the morning, and she may be “winding down” for the evening after 8pm – both common in nursing home populations. If your mother would like you to visit during those times, then they cannot prevent you from doing so, even if they request a phone call first.

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