Some Nursing Homes To Reopen With Restrictions, Limited By Rise In Positive Cases

Friday, June 26th 2020, 6:22 pm
By: Mallory Thomas

TULSA, Okla. -

It's been months since some families have been able to see their loved ones staying in nursing homes or assisted living.

Families with loved ones in Oklahoma nursing home and long-term care facilities finally thought there was light at the end of the tunnel after months of isolation and time apart. 

"That's very difficult because they all the sudden had all these emotions that ‘I get to see my loved one’ and those are such difficult conversations we're having to have right now," said Kimberly Green, COO of Diakonos Group. 

Governor Stitt announced nursing home, assisted living, and long-term care facilities could allow visitation to begin again on June 15th if the facility has no new COVID-19 cases and the county COVID-19 numbers remain steady for 14 days.

Green said those requirements can be tough to meet. "We don't have any facilities that are in phase two because of how it was rolled out. So if you met all the criteria when it was rolled out you were automatically in phase three," said Green. "If you're in a county with a high prevalent that continues to increase you're automatically in phase one." ​

Friday, there were more than 3,100 active COVID-19 cases in Oklahoma and Green said until the number of new patients begins to trend down visitors won't be allowed inside some facilities. 

“We have to get the community prevalence under control and that will then open our doors as well. Those counties that are still in phase one that can’t open even for outside visitation that’s not going to change as long as we see these numbers increase," said Green.