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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Title XXIX
Chapter 408
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F.S. 408.823
408.823 In-person visitation.
(1) This section applies to developmental disabilities centers as defined in s. 393.063, hospitals licensed under chapter 395, nursing home facilities licensed under part II of chapter 400, hospice facilities licensed under part IV of chapter 400, intermediate care facilities for the developmentally disabled licensed and certified under part VIII of chapter 400, and assisted living facilities licensed under part I of chapter 429.
(2)(a) No later than May 6, 2022, each provider shall establish visitation policies and procedures. The policies and procedures must, at a minimum, include infection control and education policies for visitors; screening, personal protective equipment, and other infection control protocols for visitors; permissible length of visits and numbers of visitors, which must meet or exceed the standards in ss. 400.022(1)(b) and 429.28(1)(d), as applicable; and designation of a person responsible for ensuring that staff adhere to the policies and procedures. Safety-related policies and procedures may not be more stringent than those established for the provider’s staff and may not require visitors to submit proof of any vaccination or immunization. The policies and procedures must allow consensual physical contact between a resident, client, or patient and the visitor.
(b) A resident, client, or patient may designate a visitor who is a family member, friend, guardian, or other individual as an essential caregiver. The provider must allow in-person visitation by the essential caregiver for at least 2 hours daily in addition to any other visitation authorized by the provider. This section does not require an essential caregiver to provide necessary care to a resident, client, or patient of a provider, and providers may not require an essential caregiver to provide such care.
(c) The visitation policies and procedures required by this section must allow in-person visitation in all of the following circumstances, unless the resident, client, or patient objects:
1. End-of-life situations.
2. A resident, client, or patient who was living with family before being admitted to the provider’s care is struggling with the change in environment and lack of in-person family support.
3. The resident, client, or patient is making one or more major medical decisions.
4. A resident, client, or patient is experiencing emotional distress or grieving the loss of a friend or family member who recently died.
5. A resident, client, or patient needs cueing or encouragement to eat or drink which was previously provided by a family member or caregiver.
6. A resident, client, or patient who used to talk and interact with others is seldom speaking.
7. For hospitals, childbirth, including labor and delivery.
8. Pediatric patients.
(d) The policies and procedures may require a visitor to agree in writing to follow the provider’s policies and procedures. A provider may suspend in-person visitation of a specific visitor if the visitor violates the provider’s policies and procedures.
(e) The providers shall provide their visitation policies and procedures to the agency when applying for initial licensure, licensure renewal, or change of ownership. The provider must make the visitation policies and procedures available to the agency for review at any time, upon request.
(f) Within 24 hours after establishing the policies and procedures required under this section, providers must make such policies and procedures easily accessible from the homepages of their websites.
(3) The agency shall dedicate a stand-alone page on its website to explain the visitation requirements of this section and provide a link to the agency’s web page to report complaints. 2, 3, ch. 2022-34.