The right to visit elderly people in nursing homes cannot be subject to “any restriction”, said Minister of Solidarity Jean-Christophe Combe on Friday, “rectifying” in this sense a health protocol for the management of Covid-19 which had aroused the anger of family associations.

“No person received in nursing homes will suffer further isolation due to a health protocol, no family will be denied access to their loved ones, I am personally committed to this”, hammered Combe in a press release.

Health protocol

The minister says he has “taken note of the very legitimate emotion of associations of the elderly and families” concerning a new version of the health protocol in nursing homes, published on March 10.

This protocol maintained “discriminatory instructions on the wearing of a mask and on the right of visit” and thus “undermined the fundamental freedoms to come and go which are nevertheless the norm in establishments and services for the elderly”, had insurgent on Tuesday the association With, which brings together elderly residents, families and directors of establishments.

” It was time “

In its version dated March 10, the health protocol mentioned the possibility, for directors faced with “grouped cases” of influenza or Covid, to impose “the cessation of visits (and) the suspension of outings” of residents . These “strict” measures were, however, to remain “exceptional”, it was specified.

In its new version dated March 17 and released by the ministry, this sentence has been deleted. “The measures must be adequate, proportionate to the situation of the establishment and limited in time”, simply specifies the text.

“We can only welcome this clarification because we were expecting a firm and strong word from the minister”, commented to AFP the president of the association With Patrick Couratin. ” It was time ! But the protocol is still too vague, ”reacted Claudette Brialix, the president of the Fnapaef, which brings together families of residents in Ehpad.

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