Originally published on June 26, 2020 4:08 pm
For the first time in months, residents of Illinois long-term care facilities can once again visit with loved ones in person as Illinois moves into phase 4 of reopening.
Janelle Clark, executive director of Serenity Assisted Living in East Peoria, says it's really special to see families reunite in person for the first time since March.
"The masks cover the smiles, but the eyes light up on both sides. The residents are excited to see their families, we're actually super excited to see them, and we've been hearing stories about them all day," Clark said.
Chuck Dobbelaire, the former mayor of East Peoria, and his wife, JoAnn, visited Chuck's sister, Ila Ahten, for the first time in months on Friday at Serenity.
"We talk to her on the phone about every 10 days, but we haven't been able to see her. She stays very upbeat," he said.
Visitors must fill out a brief questionaire and undergo a temperature check to make sure they're healthy before they meet up with their loved ones outside in a patio area. Masks also are required for in-person visits.
Up until now, only virtual visits, phone calls, or window visits have been possible.
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