Care home visits to resume for the double-jabbed

The government is relaxing its ban on visitors at residential care homes, with the Social Welfare Department announcing on Friday that it will put in place a restricted visiting arrangement starting on May 13.

The department said the decision was based on consideration of the latest epidemic situation.

Visitors must have received two doses of vaccine and test negative for the coronavirus through rapid antigen test at a designated area of the residential care home.

The residents they are visiting will also have to be double-jabbed.

Those those who cannot be vaccinated due to health reasons will have to provide medical proof and will have to present two negative Covid test results – one conducted through PCR within 48 hours prior to the visit and another rapid test administered in a designated area of the care home.

Exemptions will be given to those who recovered from Covid-19 within three months.

Unvaccinated visitors going to care homes on compassionate grounds will have to undergo rapid tests at the care home before their visits and submit PCR test results within two days after.

The people-in-charge of the care homes will be responsible in ensuring that all visitors and residents comply with the requirements and keep the relevant records, the government said.

Meanwhile, the government also announced that it will conduct nucleic testing for people at all residential care homes and nursing homes for the elderly in phases.

Testing kits will be delivered to the facilities for staff to take nasal samples from all their residents.