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Extension of Health Care Facility Visitor Restrictions – Executive Order 2020-37

People Leaving HospitalOn April 5, 2020, Governor Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-37 which extends restrictions on the entry of individuals into health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities, and juvenile justice facilities. Previously, Executive Order 2020-07 prohibited visitors that were not necessary to the provision of medical care, to support the activities of daily living, or to exercise the power of attorney or court-appointed guardianship for an individual under the facility’s care from these facilities.

Executive Order 2020-07 imposed these restrictions from March 16, 2020 until April 5, 2020. Executive Order 2020-07 required these facilities to perform a health evaluation of all individuals seeking to enter the facility. Executive Order 2020-37 clarifies and extends these restrictions and rescinds Executive Order 2020-07.

Executive Order 2020-37 applies to all health care facilities, residential care facilities, congregate care facilities and juvenile justice facilities. It clarifies that “residential care facilities” includes the following:

  • homes for the aged,
  • nursing homes,
  • adult foster care facilities,
  • hospice facilities,
  • substance abuse disorder residential facilities,
  • independent living facilities, and
  • assisted living facilities.

Visitors to these facilities are only allowed if they are necessary for providing medical care, supporting activities of daily living, or exercising the power of attorney or court-appointed guardianship for an individual under the facility’s care. Parents, foster parents, or guardians of an individual under age 21 under the facility’s care may visit the facility. Those visiting a patient in serious or critical condition or in hospice care are permitted, as are those visiting under exigent circumstances or for official governmental functions.

Executive Order 2020-37 requires these facilities to perform a health evaluation of all individuals who seek to enter the facility and are not presently under the care of the facility. Any individual who does not meet the evaluation criteria must be denied entry. In the evaluation, the facility must check for symptoms of a respiratory infection and ask whether the individual has had contact with someone with a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

The visitor and evaluation restrictions are in effect until May 3, 2020. Executive Order 2020-37 is available here.

Foster Swift’s health care group is continuing to monitor the rapidly changing health care environment relating to COVID-19. The laws surrounding COVID-19 are constantly changing, please consult with your attorney before taking any action.

Jennifer Van Regenmorter...616.796.2502...jvanregenmorter@fosterswift.com

Categories: Health Care Reform, Hospitals

 has particular expertise in health law and she represents providers with emphasis in the areas of physicians, hospice, home care and long term care, including one of the country’s largest long-term care organizations. She has a vast array of experience in teaming with providers in the areas of regulatory compliance and contracts. 

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