Updated Visitation Policies and Safety Mandates at Bethesda Communities

Bethesda Health | March 18, 2021

Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Communities

Per guidance issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on March 10, 2021, Bethesda’s skilled nursing and assisted living facilities in Missouri will be altering its previous visitation restrictions and begin allowing indoor visitation. Implementation of these visitation policy changes are effective immediately.

As a result, indoor visitation will no longer be limited to end-of-life and compassionate care visits. However, indoor visitation can be only accommodated after consulting with the Administration at the skilled nursing or assisted living community, as there are criteria that must be adhered to before a visit can be confirmed.       Click here to access the three criteria for indoor visits per the guidance of CMS.

Outdoor visitation can still be accommodated and is preferred.

New guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health is expected to be announced soon.


With the availability of FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccines, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has launched an informational website. To access the Missouri website, click here.


The restrictive policies enforced by Bethesda for outdoor visitation at those communities whose campuses provide an opportunity for outdoor visits has not changed. Outdoor visits remain limited to residents who are COVID-19 negative or asymptomatic. These visits are to be coordinated through the facility’s Activities/Life Enrichment team.

Individuals wanting to conduct a visit (indoor, outdoor or compassionate care) visit must be willing to submit to a temperature screening and able to answer “NO” to questions related to signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

Virtual visits (Skype, Zoom, etc.) with residents and patients continue to be coordinated by the Life Enrichment/Activities Directors at each skilled nursing or assisted living community.


Independent Living/Retirement Communities

Per new guidance from the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, visitation in our Independent Living/Retirement communities is being permitted. Criteria enforced by the community must be adhered to, and the visits remain limited to residents who are COVID-19 negative or asymptomatic. Masks must be worn, and a distance of at least six feet is kept between resident and visitor. Please contact the Administration at the community to understand the criteria further.

In addition, the restrictions in the dining rooms in our Independent Living/Retirement communities have been changed to accommodate 50% occupancy where space is available to accommodate six feet between tables. All tables have been positioned to accommodate social distancing, and reservations must be made in advance.  Residents will continue to be given the option of picking up their meals or having them delivered if they prefer.

The following restrictions also are in place:

We appreciate your understanding and compliance with these restrictions regarding visitation and entering these resident communities. If you have any further questions, please call the management of the resident community for which you seek information.


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