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Visitors allowed back to local senior homes

Hu Min
Shanghai's civil affairs authorities are rolling back an earlier ban on outsiders at homes for the elderly, although certain restrictions still apply.
Hu Min

Shanghai's civil affairs authorities are allowing visits to local senior homes, although reservations are required.

The authorization was contained within an amended version of coronavirus prevention measures for the city's civil affairs sectors, released on Wednesday by the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau.

Visits to senior homes across the city had been suspended for some time to prevent coronavirus infection among vulnerable residents. 

However a ban on visits to the living quarters of the elderly at senior homes remains in effect. 

The bureau said communication between seniors and their families via video and phone call is still encouraged, even though visits have been allowed. 

Reservations are not mandatory for family members looking to visit sick elderly relatives, it said. 

Visitors must present their health QR code and wear face masks, the bureau said. Senior homes are ordered to register and review their information, measure their body temperature and perform disinfection. 

For relatives who send food to seniors, meals will be taken by staff before they are delivered to seniors, the bureau said. 

New residents at senior homes should undergo 14-day medical observation before moving into their living areas with other seniors, the bureau ordered.

Newly recruited workers at senior homes should also undergo 14-day medical observation before work,  the bureau said. 

Senior homes were previously not allowed to hire new staff due to the epidemic. 

A ban on express, food and medicine delivery workers remains in effect and parcels must be brought to seniors by staff, the bureau added.

Regular temperature checks on seniors are ordered and gatherings of over 20 people are banned, according to the bureau. 

The reopening areas should be limited as well and activities with more than 20 people should be avoided in these locations, the bureau states. 

Community-based senior canteens and meal service venues are allowed to gradually reopen with strict prevention measures ordered, according to the bureau. 

Seniors in home quarantine, living alone and with physical disabilities are the priority, the bureau said. 

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