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Bill will loosen hospital visitation restrictions during COVID-19

The Tennessee House of Representatives unanimously approved legislation last Thursday that expands who can visit a hospital patient during a time when COVID-19 is a health concern.

House Bill 2665 requires that hospitals allow a patient to have at least one representative as a visitor as long as the individual agrees to follow safety protocols established by the facility. The legislation does not apply to areas of a hospital that necessitate higher levels of safety protocols such as intensive care units.

State law already requires at least one family member to be allowed in a hospital with a patient during a period in which a disaster, emergency, or public health emergency for COVID-19 has been declared. House Bill 2665 removes the requirement of a negative COVID-19 test and lack of symptoms, and replaces it with the requirement that the family member or patient representative agrees to follow all safety protocols established by the hospital.

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A companion version of the bill is still making its way through the Senate. Information about House Bill 2665 can be found here.

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