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Nursing homes can’t allow families to see loved ones during COVID-19 pandemic

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MONETT, Mo. — One mother and daughter are unable to see each other due to COVID-19 guidelines.

Kelly Cornell’s 79-year old mother has been in a nursing home for two years. Kelly asked us not to use her mother’s name or show pictures for privacy.

Kelly says for months she hasn’t been able to see her mother in person, only through the window or on Zoom.

“I understand they are trying to protect them but for example, my mother, she has dementia and one of the worst things you can do for somebody that has dementia is to isolate them,” said Kelly.

The seniors are among the most vulnerable. Throughout the country, many patients in homes have tested positive. Visitations are a rarity these days. Kelly is not alone in missing her mother. People everywhere have someone they love in homes. Kelly says her mom doesn’t leave the room.

“Yes they are protecting them,” said Kelly. “But are they not hurting them too?”

Dr. Lisa Parker, Kelly’s mom’s doctor, says Kelly’s mother’s dementia has significantly worsened over the past two months. It’s unclear if the worsening is related to the COVID-19 quarantine.

“I think some of them don’t understand what’s going on,” said Parker. “They have some dementia or they have some sort of cognitive impairment. Its kind of confusing, overwhelming to them where nobody can come to visit. talking on the telephone and seeing them in person.”

Kelly is just frustrated and says she’s speaking out for all those in the nursing homes. She would like to find a different yet safe way to spend one on one time with her mother.

“It wouldn’t be so bad if it was just a week or two but we are going on three months and she’s just my world,” said Kelly.

The CDC says because of how easily the virus can spread in long-term care settings and the severity of the illness for residents with COVID-19, facilities were advised to restrict all visitations. For Kelly. She continues to look for answers on how and when she can hug her mother again.

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