You will be able to visit loved ones in nursing homes and other long-term care centers in Arizona as long as you follow safety requirements set due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Arizona Department of Health Services recently approved guidelines that the Governor’s Task Force on Long-Term Care proposed to start permitting in-person visits in these types of communities. In order to visit these facilities, each visitor must reveal a negative COVID-19 test (either PCR or antigen) that is less than 48 hours old. Visitors also must sign attestations saying they have stayed in isolation from the time the COVID-19 test was done and the visit and that they do not have any symptoms of the virus.

Each nursing home and long-term care center must limit contact with residents as much as possible, including setting up a dedicated visitation area. Residents (when it is safe), visitors and staff members must wear face masks and facilities should require hand sanitizing before each visit. The nursing homes and other long-term care facilities must keep visitor logs for contact tracing reasons and enhance their sanitation of the facility where visits occur.

Long-term care residents had been living almost six months “alone and isolated from their families, putting their physical and emotional health in peril” prior to the changes in visitation rules, said Dana Marie Kennedy, AARP Arizona state director. The new guidelines will let family members safety reunite with loved ones but AARP Arizona will keep advocating for more testing in long-term care centers, Kennedy said. Skilled nursing facilities restricted visitors when the pandemic began while assisted living and group homes set their own visitation policies.

To learn more, visit the Arizona Department of Health Services at



Hello, North Central neighbor — thank you for visiting!

Sign up to receive our digital issue in your inbox each month.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.