PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced a new phased plan to allow some visitors at long-term care facilities.
He made the announcement during a press conference on Thursday afternoon. The plan includes four phases:
- First phase (almost all at the moment): Compassionate care visits, window visits, outdoor visits.
- Second phase: Additional options for indoor visits with limited circumstances.
- Third phase: Even more options for indoor visits.
- Fourth phase: Return to normal visitation protocol.
“We know we’d love to jump back to normal…so we need to continue to be thoughtful and deliberate,” Inslee said.
Department of Health Secretary John Wiesman also made remarks during the press conference, saying there have been 5,694 COVID-19 cases associated with longterm care facilities, with 894 deaths statewide. That’s 10% of total cases and 56% of total deaths in Washington.
Inslee released new recommendations during a press conference on Wednesday, saying districts where there are more than 75 cases per 100,000 residents over a two-week period are “strongly urged” to implement distance learning.
The guidance changes for districts where cases are lower. Areas with 26-74 cases per 100,000 residents, over two-week period, are urged to implement distance learning for most middle and high school students, with possible in-person for elementary and special needs students. Extracurricular activities should be canceled for now.
Areas with 25 or fewer cases per 100,000 residents over two-week period should still implement distance learning for middle and high school. In-person for elementary schools is permitted.
Inslee said schools must maintain the state requirements for hygiene, cleaning, social distancing and masks. They must also be ready to monitor and respond to cases with a set plan.
Thursday’s press conference is scheduled to begin at 2:30 p.m. KOIN 6 News will be listening in and will update this story when new information is available.