Visitation Shelters in use, general visiting possible

Designated visitation shelters, or CoVisitation shelters came into use in Virden and throughout most of Prairie Mountain Health region in late January. This broadens visits with care home seniors to include loved ones not previously on the visitation list.

Ken Oberlin, Care Team Manager for the personal care homes in Virden says that both visitation shelters opened for booking and use the week of Jan. 11 with the first visit at Sherwood Care Home was on Jan. 27 and at the West-man Nursing Home on Jan. 15.

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A communique from PMH Each PCH shelter in Prairie Mountain Health region said the shelters had different targeted start dates, depending on individual facility circumstances and contractor circumstances. 

During Provincial Code Red restrictions, the shelters will accommodate a maximum of one general visitor at a time to visit with a PCH resident. For those PCHs without external all-season CoVisitation shelters, designated internal visitation rooms have been developed to support visits with similar precautions in place. Visitor screening for symptoms of – or exposure to – COVID-19 remains in place, masks must be worn by visitors and residents (as able to) and physical distancing maintained for the duration of the visits

Visits are by appointment only and all visitors will be ‘health screened’ prior to their visit. For an appointment, contact the individual PCH facility.

Designated family

This should not be confused with the current personal care home guidelines surrounding in-person visitors that have already been identified as ‘designated family caregivers’. Up to two designated family caregivers identified may visit as determined with the care team and providing all Infection Prevention control measures are followed including COVID screening, hand hygiene and physical distancing requirements.

The all-season shelters have been carefully developed and constructed with every COVID-19 precaution to allow residents to safely and comfortably participate in social visits with family members and loved ones. 

External and internal shelters have dedicated ventilation systems designed to ensure the required level of air changes, filtration and directional airflow to support the safety of both residents and families. Interior surfaces have been selected to complement and facilitate the ongoing cleaning and disinfection occurring between visits. The shelters are designed so that visitors enter from outside of the building and are not required to travel through the PCH, limiting exposure to PCH residents and staff.

A video tour of what a CoVisitation shelter looks like and how it operates can be seen at




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