Republicans and Democrats Press for Important Nursing Support | WDVM25 and DCW50

WASHINGTON DC (NEXSTAR) – Rep. Claudia Tenney (RN.Y.) and other housing lawmakers say residents in long-term care facilities should never be completely cut off from their loved ones.

“A lot of them are sitting in isolation in these care facilities,” Tenney said.

The Essential Caregivers Act will allow residents to designate significant caregivers who can continue to provide support, even during a public health emergency. During the height of the pandemic, relatives could not be present as their loved ones died in isolation.

“When you see these heartbreaking pictures of family members looking through windows, into their loved ones, who are all alone, in a room and in some cases do not understand what’s going on,” Tenney said.

“They were unable to provide the personal family visit,” the rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-Va.)

Spanberger says the bill puts the concerns of nursing staff at the forefront.

“We are thinking about the future in the event of another emergency,” Spanberger said.

The bill ensures necessary access for relatives, while maintaining safety standards and protocols at the facilities.

“We do not know what we are getting and that is why these precautions are there,” Tenney said.

And they say the key now is not to let history repeat itself.

“It’s about learning from what happened in the past, acknowledging that we never want to see a repeat of the circumstances in 2020 for so many reasons,” Spanberger said.

Both Tenney and Spanberger are hopeful of moving on this bill by the end of 2022.

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